The Greater Columbia 1B League opening twin bill was no walk in the park for the Bickleton Lady Pirates this past weekend.
Unable to get most of its shots to fall, Bickleton’s girls basketball team dropped its conference openers. Friday at Lyle, the Cougars scratched out a dominating 64-9 decision against Bickleton. Saturday on the Lady Pirates’ home court, the Yakama Tribal Eagles soared away with a 57-38 victory.
In both games, indicated Bickleton Coach Emily Barnhart, the Lady Pirates’ shots simply were off the mark.
Friday at Lyle, Bickleton even struggled in getting off shots.
“Our guards are just too young and inexperienced to handle the pressure,” Barnhart said of the defensive coverage the Cougars employed against her club.
Lyle, behind identical 17-point performances from Maelynn Luke and Suzanne McConville, forged a 26-2 halftime lead. The Cougs increased the advantage to 38-7 through three quarters of play, and despite having the game well in hand went on a 26-2 roll in the final period.
“The last five minutes of the fourth quarter I played our JV girls,” said Barnhart, but she explained Lyle never eased off in applying defensive pressure.
Bickleton, which has four eighth graders and three freshmen on its 13-girl roster, was led in the scoring column by Katrina Cardenas. The freshman tallied 4 points in Friday’s loss.
At home Saturday evening, Bickleton put up a tougher fight against Yakama Tribal. Again, though, the problem for the Lady Pirates was getting their shots to fall through the hoop.
“Just a poor shooting percentage again,” Barnhart said, noting only 28 percent of the Lady Pirates’ field goal attempts were on target.
On the plus side for Bickleton, the team got a pair of outstanding efforts from junior Lindsay Brown and eighth grader Jayce Alexander.
Brown crashed the boards for a game-high 22 rebounds. She also tallied a team-high 15 points.
Alexander added a 12-rebound performance against Yakama Tribal, and ended up as the Lady Pirates’ second leading scorer with 6 points.
The Eagles were led by Lynndel Wapsheli with 27 points.
Barnhart said she is confident that the Feb. 4 rematch with the Eagles won’t end the same.
“I was very proud of the girls coming off a loss like they had the night before, and playing as hard as they did Saturday,” she said.
Bickleton (0-2, 3-8) is scheduled to host unbeaten Sunnyside Christian tonight (Tuesday).
Bickleton 2 0 5 2 -9
Lyle 9 17 12 26 -64
Bickleton – Brown 3, Cannon 0, Lindsley 0, O’Banion 2, Whitmore 0, Delbrook 0, Cardenas 4, Goodnight 0, Macias 0, Harvey 0, Alexander 0
Lyle – Luke 17, McConville 17, LaCock 4, Carse 6, Childers 4, Sol-oman 9, Cloud 2, Smith 5
Yakama Tribal 9 18 13 17 -57
Bickleton 5 10 12 11 -38
Yakama Tribal – L. Wapsheli 27, Walsey 2, Heath 4, T. Wapsheli 3, A. Wapsheli 8, Hicks 4, Marquez 3, Belly 6, Aleck 0
Bickleton – Brown 15, Cannon 4, Lindsley 0, O’Banion 4, Whitmore 3, Delbrook 0, Cardenas 2, Hanson 0, Macias 0, Harvey 4, Alexander 6