Lady Bulldogs have victory over Seeley-Swan taken away from them
ST. IGNATIUS — The Lady Bulldogs slowed down the highly-ranked Seeley-Swan offense and looked like they had pulled off an upset, only to have the victory snatched away from them in the final seconds.
In St. Ignatius Saturday, after being outscored 12-1 by the Lady Blackhawks in the first quarter, the Lady Bulldogs dug themselves out of the early hole and appeared to win the game, when Katie McDonald sank a jumper to put the Lady Bulldogs up 31-30 with two seconds left, but McDonald was called for a mysterious traveling call and the points were wiped off the scoreboard. The 10th-ranked Lady Blackhawks added a free throw and escaped the Doghouse with a 31-29 victory.
“I thought it was the best effort of the season. We played a solid four quarters. I didn’t think we had a great shooting night, but we executed on offense and we played solid defense,” Mission coach Les Rice said. “It was our best full game of the year.”
Down 12-1 by the end of the first, Rice wasn’t too worried because his team was getting good looks; the shots just weren’t falling.
“I thought we outplayed them, we just didn’t outshoot them,” Rice said of the first quarter.
At the end of the first quarter, Rice told his team that at some point the baskets are going to start going in for them, and they did for Kyla Mitchell at the start of the second quarter. Mitchell sank a 3-pointer and then scored a layup off of a steal to bring the Lady Bulldogs within five points and provide a spark for the rest of the team. Mitchell finished with a season-high 17 points.
The Lady Bulldogs got back in the game with their defense, which has been their strong suit all season. They held the potent Lady Blackhawk offense, which averaged 53 points in their 12 victories prior to Saturday, to only eight points in the second and third quarter – three in the second and five in the third – and went into the final quarter only trailing 20-14.
In a conference game in Troy Friday, the Lady Bulldogs held the District 7-B Lady Trojans to single digits in each quarter for a 31-20 victory.
“I thought we were in control of the game from the tip. We played good defense and held them to 10 points a half. On offense we were patient. That was our plan and I thought we executed it well,” Rice said.
McDonald led the balanced scoring attack for the Lady Bulldogs, finishing with 10 points. Mitchell added seven, Rachel Jensen put in six and Bella Dally pitched in with four.
The Lady Bulldogs (3-4, 7-9) host Plains Friday in their final home game and travel to Thompson Falls Saturday. Rice said they need to win both of the conference games to be the third seed at the district tournament. The Lady Bulldogs beat the Trotters in Plains earlier, but the Trotters were without Heather Earhart, their leading scorer. Rice said that Thompson Falls played a nearly perfect fourth quarter to beat them in Mission in early January.
“That’s a game we definitely think we had a chance to win,” he said.
Mission 31, Troy 20
Mission 6 14 5 6–31
Troy 3 7 4 6–20
MISSION - Ashley Courville 2, Kyla Mitchell 7, Rachel Jensen 6, Katie McDonald 10, Dalena Weaselhead 2, Bella Dally 4.
TROY - Allie Maestas 3, Alyssa Olds 3, Kimmy Klin 4, Jordan Williams 4, Jackie Pepiot 4, Michaela Curry 2.
Seeley-Swan 31, Mission 29
Seeley-Swan 12 3 5 11–31
Mission 1 6 7 15–29
SEELEY-SWAN - Ashley Holmes 4, Cascade Parcell 4, Janelle Greenwood 11, Jessica Lester 4, Anna Wood 6, Miranda Dupree 2.
MISSION - Kyla Mitchell 17, Adessa Durglo 2, Rachel Jensen 2, Katie McDonald 5, Ashley Courville 3.