Granby " Lady Panthers continue to battle on the hardwood | SkyHiNews.com

Granby " Lady Panthers continue to battle on the hardwood

Will Bublitz
Sky-Hi Daily News

Byron Hetzler/Sky-Hi Daily News

Learning as they continue to struggle through their season, the girls basketball team of Middle Park High lost all three of its latest games.

“We’re a young team this year, but we are progressing and know what we have to work on,” said coach Cheri Amos.

On Saturday, Jan. 19, the Lady Panthers traveled to Denver Lutheran. In one of their best performances of the season, they hung on tight and almost pulled off a victory. Middle Park fell just short 54-50.

“It was a very, very physical game,” Amos said. “It could have gone either way. The intensity of the game was great.”

Middle Park’s hoopsters stayed close the entire game. By the end of the first quarter, they trailed the Lights 9-7 and were stilled two points behind at halftime when the score was 24-22. In the third quarter, they narrowed it to one point 35-34, but Lutheran managed to secure the win in the fourth.

The Lady Panthers’ Lindsey Birdseye had an outstanding game, leading the team’s scoring with 15 points with 11 of them from the free-throw line.

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“This was Lindsey’s best game of the season so far,” Amos said.

Following Birdseye in the scoring was Shelley McLean who earned nine points, Kristin Van Horn with eight, Brittnay Gardner with seven and Mallory Nutting with six.

Another strong element of Middle Park’s play against Lutheran was its rebounding.

The team recorded a season high 37 rebounds. Gardner led that effort with four offensive and four defensive rebounds. Katelyn Anderson posted one offensive and four defensive.

After playing such an outstanding game against Lutheran, Middle Park’s hoopsters were not able to repeat it in last Saturday’s home game against Peak to Peak. Getting off to a slow start, they quickly fell behind and lost 60-30.

“We had a very weak first half, only earning four points in the first quarter and two in the second,” Amos said. “We played a strong second half, but we couldn’t overcome that slow start.”

The team’s rebounding remained solid with Rachel Linke earning three offensive and two defensive rebounds. Mallory Nutting made two offensive and three defensive rebounds.

“This was a completely different game from the one with Lutheran,” Amos said. “In the Lutheran game, we had what was probably our most consistent game on offense all season. Against Peak to Peak, we needed to get going right from the start.”

This past Tuesday, Jan. 29, the Lady Panthers traveled to Colorado Academy. Despite playing a much better game, they lost 45-28.

“It was honestly our best game this year,” Amos said. “We had a dynamic first quarter that ended with the score tied 8-8. During the second quarter, our offense didn’t get the ball up and that hurt us as Colorado Academy moved ahead. But there were far more positives than negatives with our defense playing strong. We just are not shooting enough.”

Shelley McLean led the offense with 11 points. She was followed by Kristin Van Horn, Rachel Linke and Emily Abbott with four points apiece, Brittnay Gardner with three and Lindsey Birdseye with one.

“Shelley played a really solid game top to bottom,” Amos said.

In rebounding, Linke did an outstanding job, earning 10 for the game. Abbott had two offensive and four defensive rebounds.

“We were moving in the right direction in the game against Colorado Academy,” Amos said. “We executed well with good passing, ball handling and intensity. We just needed to get the ball up more.”

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