For whatever reasons, and head coach Jennifer Harmer said she listed as many as she could on the chalkboard after the game, the Cheney girls’ basketball team didn’t have one of their better efforts in last Thursday’s regular-season finale against sixth-place Clarkston.
The Lady Hawks had a dismal shooting and rebounding night while the Bantams were on fire in both categories, using timely 3-point shooting and a spirited effort to down Cheney 61-42 on Senior Night.
“We did not play like a team,” Harmer said.
It didn’t take long to see it was going to be a long night for Cheney. Keyed by the shooting of freshmen guard Sequoia Swan, the Bantams outscored Cheney 14-4 over the last 3:10 of the first quarter for a 21-9 lead that the Lady Hawks never got close to overcoming.
Swan hit three 3s for nine of her game total 11 points in the frame – all of them high arcing shots that seemed to hang in the air and could have been hit by passing satellites. Clarkston expanded its lead to 14 at the half, 19 at the end of three, and after a 3 by Cheney’s Coreen Labish and a short jumper by senior Samantha Sheffels returned the margin to 14 at 49-35 early in the fourth, went on a 12-0 before Cheney scored again with 1:52 to play.
Labish and Sheffels led Cheney with 12 points each. The Lady Hawks shot 34 percent from the field, 14 for 41, overall, going 3 for 7 from beyond the arc and 11 for 19 from the line.
The Lady Hawks had just 23 rebounds overall, seven offensively, with Labish leading the way with nine and six respectively. Cheney took relatively good care of the ball in committing 11 turnovers while forcing 11 steals, eight by guard Chae Brown.
Cheney finishes the regular season at 4-8 in Great Northern League play, fifth, and 7-12 overall. The Lady Hawks opened post-season play Tuesday night on the road against fourth place Colville (6-6, 10-10), full results next week.
Cheney split its regular season meetings with the Indians, losing 53-35 Jan. 12 with an injury-depleted roster and after having played a tough game against co-league champion West Valley the night before. The Lady Hawks played one their best games in rallying for a 50-45 win over Colville at home Jan. 31.
Harmer said she and her team had a long talk after the Clarkston game and said they felt more confident heading into Tuesday’s loser-out playoff match up.
John McCallum can be reached at email@example.com.