Maidens sunk by slow start in Bigfork
COLUMBIA FALLS — The Maidens started to find their offensive rhythm last week, but still came out on the wrong end in a pair of games.
After getting off to a slow start against the Vals, the Maidens fought back to pull within nine points before falling 52-36 in Bigfork. The Maidens were overmatched in the week’s finale, losing 60-28 to the much taller Wildkats in Columbia Falls Saturday.
Against the Vals Tuesday, the Maidens spotted them a 35-15 halftime lead, before climbing back into the game. The Maidens held the Vals to only 17 points in the second half with many of them coming at the free-throw line late in the game.
The 36 points the Maidens scored, was their second highest offensive output this season – they scored 42 points against Whitefish in their only victory this season.
“We’re improving. Again, it’s just getting use to a new system. They’re starting to understand what to do and where the opportunities are coming from ... they’re starting to do better things offensively,” first-year Ronan coach Doug Fisher said.
Sophomore guard Nina Orozco led the Maidens with 15 points.
“She shot the ball real well. She handled the ball really well for us. She’s starting to get her dribble penetration down. She’s just becoming more aggressive,” Fisher said.
Jonna Grant finished with 12 points, with most of them coming from inside the paint. Fisher said in their first year playing together, Grant and Orozco are starting to develop some chemistry and a good inside-out game.
“They’re playing really well together. But we need more than two players to step up to be competitive, but it’s a good start,” Fisher said.
Taylor Lynch, who finished with five points, was the Maidens’ next leading scorer.
The undersized Maidens were only trailing Columbia Falls 14-10 at the end of the first quarter, but then the Wildkats’ size took over the game and Ronan couldn’t stop the 6-foot-2 DeWit sisters.
“We went in with a pretty good scheme ... We wanted to stack-it-back and make the guards beat us. And we did that, but then they just started pounding the ball inside,” Fisher said. “The girls did a good job, they were just overmatched.”
Kayla DeWit finished with 24 points and Kelsey DeWit added 12.
Grant led the Maidens with nine points and Orozco added seven.
The Maidens host Class AA Big Sky Thursday in the first game of a four-game home stand and play Mission Saturday.
The Maidens lost to the Lady Bulldogs 24-15 in St. Ignatius in December. Fisher said his team has improved immensely on offense since that game and hopefully they’ll score more than one-point in the first quarter and won’t have to dig themselves out of a hole.
Bigfork 52, Ronan 36
Ronan 7 8 11 10–36
Bigfork 13 22 7 10–52
RONAN - Taylor Lynch 5, Jonna Grant 12, Alice Van Gunten 4, Nina Orozco 15.
BIGFORK - Mallery Knoll 14, McKinze Schults 1, Quinci Paine 13, Taylor Peck 8, Melissa VanDerveer 5, Caitlin Charlebois 11.
Columbia Falls 60, Ronan 28
Ronan 10 6 6 6–28
C. Falls 14 18 14 14–60
RONAN - Nina Orozco 7, Taylor Lynch 2, Jonna Grant 9, Alice Van Gunten 3, Ashley Grandchamp 3, Tailyr Irvine 2, Shandeen Belanger 2.
Columbia Falls - McKenzie Reeve 2, Danielle Gilley 8, Kayla DeWit 24, Brooke Cady 6, Shay Gilley 8, Kelsey DeWit 12.