Lady Hawks earn first win by downing Reardan
The Cheney High girls basketball team finally found the win column, and in the process earned first-year head coach Shannon Root her first varsity victory with a 53-39 win last Tuesday at Reardan.
The Lady Hawks started fast against the defending 2B state champion Indians, capitalizing on 10 first quarter turnovers to open a 14-3 lead, expanding it to 23-10 at intermission and never being seriously challenged after that. The win served as a nice salve for the team after suffering a pair of season-opening losses, including a 56-16 drubbing at the hands of a very good Ellensburg Dec. 7.
Root said the difference between the first and second weeks of action is the Lady Hawks are now beginning to find ways of playing together better as a team, creating good mixes on the court. That, and they are also beginning to feel more comfortable about taking shots.
“They’re realizing what we’ve been preaching to them, (and that) is you have to shoot to score,” Root said.
Cheney had four players in double figures at Reardan, led by Kendyl Cone’s 13 points. Katie McGourin added 12, most coming from offensive rebound put backs, while both Meagan McDowell and Shyann Morton added 10. Against Ellensburg, Cheney took just 23 shots, Root said, but doubled that against the Indians.
Cheney also did better protecting the ball, committing 12 turnovers to Reardan’s 20. Root said the Lady Hawks did give up 12 offensive rebounds, but those came in chunks.
Cheney (1-2) has two more opportunities to work on its game this week, taking on Northeast A schools Freeman and Lakeside. Friday’s game at Freeman is a rescheduled hookup from Dec. 6.
The Scotties (0-1) are coming off a 19-4 season in 2012-2013 while the Eagles (3-0) were 18-6. Lakeside’s wins this year have come against Priest River, St. George’s and Cheney’s fellow Great Northern League opponent Deer Park, 58-5.
Root sees both games as good challenges for her improving squad.
“They’re good basketball players,” she said of the Lady Hawks. “They just need to work together.”
John McCallum can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.