Northern Wyoming Daily News - Serving the Big Horn Basin for over 100 years

By Alex Kuhn
Sports Editor 

Unusual week puts the young Lady Pioneers to the test

 

January 23, 2018

DAILY NEWS/ Alex Kuhn

Lady Pioneer Lindsey Holiday goes in for a layup during a Jan. 9 game against Greybull at Ten Sleep High School.

TEN SLEEP - It was a strange and trying week for the Ten Sleep Lady Pioneers basketball team. An injury and sickness left the six-player team shorthanded for their two games last week against 1A Northwest conference rivals Meeteetse and Dubois, both of which resulted in losses.

"It was just an odd weekend," said TSHS girls basketball coach Sarah Novak.

In their 33-19 home loss to Meeteetse, the Lady Pioneers were without sophomore point guard, and leading scorer, Bryley Moore due to sickness. This gave Ten Sleep five players for the entire game, but not long into the contest with the Lady Longhorns junior guard Charity Starr was injured and did not return to the game until the fourth quarter.

"The Meeteetse game we played the majority of it with four players, not to make excuses. Bryley Moore had been sick most the week and didn't play. Then during the first quarter Charity [Starr] set a screen and took a head to her chin and bit through her tongue," said Novak.

Still, the four remaining Lady Pioneers, freshmen Lindsey Holiday, Elizabeth Lungren, Payton Casteel and junior Kinley Erickson gutted it out. The four were able to keep the game close for a bit, trailing by one going into halftime, but eventually, the Lady Longhorns were able to wear down Ten Sleep.

"They [Meeteetse] pressured us and with Charity and Bryley, our two primary ball handlers not on the floor, we coughed it up quite a bit. But the girls played really hard for all 32 minutes and considering the circumstances they were never down on themselves," said Novak.

Holiday led Ten Sleep in scoring with 12 points, "She played a very nice game and stepped up with the other two not on the floor," said Novak. "Next time we play them [Meeteetse] I think it will be a pretty good match, provided that we're at full strength."

In their 41-24 road loss to Dubois, the Lady Pioneers had Moore and Starr but at less than 100 percent, and to top it all off had to take the scenic route to Dubois due to the Wind River Canyon being closed due to an accident.

"It was a long day Saturday, but we had some good bonding time on the bus," said Novak. "Charity played a little bit, we told her she didn't have to but she wanted to get out there. Bryley played a few minutes also, but neither was near their usual level of play since they had to deal with the flu or a sore jaw."

The freshman Lungren led the Lady Pioneers with nine points.

With the weird week behind them and games against conference foe St. Stephens and Arvada-Clearmont on Friday and Saturday, the focus of this week's practice is to get healthy and get back to the basics.

"Our game against St. Stephens will be physical and up and down. We'll have to get everyone healthy, get everyone's focus back and take care of the basketball against No. 4-ranked St. Stephens. We need to really control the boards, so we'll be emphasizing rebounding. We'll be emphasizing shooting with people in our face whether that's jump shots or layups," said Novak.

Also during practice, Novak will look to pick up the intensity, as she's noticed that her young team is hitting a bit of a lull.

"As a team, we talked about getting after a little bit more in practice, going game speed in drills at practice. I think that will help us with our strength and conditioning and physicality. We have to get ourselves mentally and physically ready for those back-to-back games. We'll make changes and like possibly shorten practices. We'll cut back on the time of the drills, but like I told them we'll only do that if they're busting tail for four minutes. We'll try that this week and see if we can't get a little sharper," said Novak.

The Lady Pioneers will host St. Stephens Friday night at 5 p.m. then Saturday travel to Arvada-Clearmont for a 1 p.m. game.

 
 

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