By PAUL DELANEY
The Medical Lake girls’ basketball team will have the momentum of a good start in non-league play behind them as the Cardinals begin Northeast A League play next Tuesday at Kettle Falls.
As of games through last week the Cards are 3-1 following a 50-17 win over Royal City last Tuesday and 35-31 at Deer Park last Friday.
Medical Lake played a game this past Tuesday night at former Great Northern League foe Colville. “They are traditionally a strong basketball program and that will be a good test for us,” Cardinals’ head coach Carey Schwarzer said.
“It’s nice to start off the season with a couple of wins,” Schwarzer said. She was especially happy with the total effort she saw against Royal where Cassidy Hagel scored 12 points and eight assists to lead ML.
The Cardinals raced to a 27-7 halftime lead against the Knights and never let their foot off the gas pedal the rest of the game.
“I was really proud of how my team played together on offense and defense,” Schwarzer said. “Our goal was to win every quarter and we did that.
While Medical Lake went on the road to 2A Deer Park last Friday and claimed a win, Schwarzer was a little less happy with what she saw. She was disappointed with her team’s defensive intensity this time around. Additionally, “Compared to the Royal City game the offense wasn’t clicking,” Schwarzer said.
Medical Lake trailed 27-26 going into the final 8 minutes but a 9-4 edge in the fourth quarter decided it.
“I have to give Deer Park credit, they played us way tougher in the second game,” Schwarzer said. Medical Lake won 25-15 the first time the two met. Senior Sabrina Earle led the Cards with 14 points against Deer Park, plus she added five blocks. Becky Troutt had 9.
Schwarzer’s goal to get a little bit better each day, she said. “During the Deer Park game the thing that we improved at was being able to finish a close game.”
When they needed to her team got stops and took care of the ball she said, “And a W is a W.”
“What I really liked about the game was that even though things weren’t totally clicking the girls didn’t give up and they found a way to pull out the win,” Schwarzer said.
Paul Delaney can be reached at email@example.com.