By William

STERLING – The Smoky Valley girls basketball team let a game get away from them on Friday as they let a first half lead slip away in the final two quarters and ended up losing to SE of Saline, 42-36 to finish sixth at the 7th Annual Sterling Girls Basketball Invitational.

The Lady Vikings held a slim one-point, 13-12 advantage at the end of the first quarter before extending the lead out to six at 22-16 as the two teams headed for the halftime break.

SE of Saline came out running in the third quarter and outscored Smoky Valley 18-4 to turn a deficit into an eight-point lead at 34-26. The Lady Vikings outscored SE of Saline by two in the final eight minutes of play, but it was not enough to win as they suffered the six-point loss to finish sixth like the Viking boys at Sterling.

“SE of Saline came out of the halftime break to outscore us 18-4 in the third quarter,” noted Lady Viking Head Coach Larry Van Der Wege. “We cut the lead down to five late in the fourth but couldn’t get it any closer.”

Ellie Brumbaugh led the Lady Viking on offense with 14 points while Breanna Priddy just missed double digits with nine. Brumbaugh also won the tournament three-point contest as well.

Coach Van Der Wege concluded his reflections on the game by saying, “We won three quarters of the game but that isn’t enough. SE of Saline came out of the halftime very well and we didn’t match their intensity. The shots didn’t fall in the second half that did in the first half. SE of Saline deserves a lot of credit for that, but we need to improve our execution against a pressure defense. Ellie (Brumbaugh) had a great tournament and it was good that Breanna (Priddy) was able to have more success. We competed well but as player and coaches, we need to do a better job of making the adjustments needed and handling the other team’s adjustments coming out of the break.”


Now 4-6 for the season, the Lady Vikings will be back in action on Tuesday, January 28, when they travel south to Hutchinson to play Hutchinson Trinity.


SCORING:                    1          2          3          4          FINAL

SE of Saline                 12        4          18        8          = 42

LADY VIKINGS              13        9          4          10        = 36

SMOKY VALLEY LADY VIKINGS INDIVIDUAL SCORING (36 total points): Ellie Brumbaugh – 14; Breanna Priddy – 9; Claire Broxterman – 4; Kerington Haxton – 4; Avery Van Der Wege – 3; Kaylie Ryan – 2.

Three-Pointers Made (3): Ellie Brumbaugh – 2; Avery Van Der Wege – 1.

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(Post is SPONSORED by CrossDove Writers)