The Creswell Lady Bulldogs got off to a stronger first-quarter start than has been their pattern this season, but struggled in the second half before dropping their girls’ basketball league opener, 39-51, to the La Pine Hawks on Jan. 4.
Creswell edged La Pine 14-13 in the first quarter and held a narrow 22-20 halftime lead. But the Hawks outscored the Lady Dawgs 16-12 to end the third quarter up 38-32, and again outscored Creswell 13-7 in the final period.
”We played hard in the first half, but in the second half we didn’t do as good a job rebounding and getting after loose balls, while they played hard the whole way and did a better job of anticipating than we did,” said Creswell Head Coach Tyler Hollingsworth.
While turnovers didn’t plague the Lady Dawgs much, their occasional miscues ceded baskets – and game momentum – to the Hawks.
”We didn’t have a lot of turnovers in the second half, but they came at crucial moments, where La Pine had just scored and then we turned the ball over for back-to-back buckets and a big momentum shift,” Hollingsworth said. ”La Pine is much improved, and in the second half they just kept playing harder. We kept fighting; we just didn’t do enough good things to get the job done.”
Freya DeMasters paced Creswell with 13 points, five rebounds and three assists. Bailey Howell added 11 points, three rebounds and five blocks.
La Pine’s Cortney Wolf led all scorers with 17 points – 12 of those coming in the second half. ”She was key,” Hollingsworth said. ”She’s a driver, and she was able to drive without any (defensive) help; we need to do a better job on that.”
The Lady Dawgs travel to Pleasant Hill this week for their second league game, where they will look to bring their A-game for the entire game.
”Pleasant Hill is very solid,” Hollingsworth said. ”It’ll be a good test for us.”