RICHLAND - Sunnyside's Tuesday night Mid-Valley League game with Hanford was close - at least for a while.
The Lady Grizzlies dropped a 72-42 decision to Hanford after trailing by just four points at halftime.
Sunnyside was outscored by 14 points in the third period and 12 points in the fourth to tilt the scoreboard heavily in the home side's favor despite what, until the third period, had been a close game, Coach Leo Gomez said.
"If it's not free throws, it's the second half," said Gomez, who said his team's woes have come from a lack of intensity in the second half or poor free throw shooting.
For the Lady Grizzlies, Kerri Urrutia scored a game-high 15 points in the loss.
"She went out and played her kind of game," Gomez said.
Fatima Ruelas scored 10 points and Talia Spini was kept in check, being held to just 6 points on the evening.
Spini also pulled down a team-high seven rebounds. Ruelas grabbed five boards on the night.
Vanessa Torbay swiped one steal to go along with her 6 points.
Gomez said the problem his players have had this season in league play is that they haven't played full games.
"We really haven't played four quarters the last few games," he said.
For Hanford, Ashleigh Garcia and Nikki DePeel each had 13 points on the night.
With the loss the Lady Grizzlies remain on the outside of the District tournament playoff picture looking in.
The Grizzlies need to overtake Selah or Wapato in the Mid-Valley League to make the six-team District playoff tournament.
Gomez said he hasn't thrown in the towel on the season yet.
"It's been a hard season so far," Gomez said. "But I haven't given up on these guys."
The Lady Grizzlies host Ellensburg this Friday night before traveling to Selah next Tuesday in what might be considered a must-win game for the struggling Sunnyside club.
Friday's game is scheduled to start at 5:45 p.m.