The Lady Vandals had only one game this past week, on the road Saturday at Owyhee. The Friday game at Carlin was cancelled because the Railroaders cancelled their girls basketball season several weeks ago.
At Owyhee, the two-time defending state champions, Vandal coach Travis Gallagher said the team lost a close 60-56 decision. “We started out with a big lead in the first half. Saw it grow to 15 points early in the second quarter. But there was a big momentum shift near the end of the first half. We missed a couple of shots and Kaylani Smartt buried three three-pointers in a row.” Eureka only led at the half 30-24.
In the second half, the Braves went on the warpath and outscored the Vandals 24-11 that period.
He said, “Morgan Thomas was in foul trouble and had to sit out most of the third quarter. Our defense was soft. They were making points and we were making mistakes.”
But Gallagher said the Lady Vandals (13-6, 3-3) made a valiant effort to come back in the fourth quarter. We were right there, but missed a couple of layups in the final two minutes and just came up a little shy.”
Junior posts Morgan Thomas and Angelica Townsend both scored 16 points for the Vandals. “First time in a long time my post players outscored my guards,” Gallagher said. “I have to feel good about that.”
Eureka is in third place behind McDermitt (15-2, 5-0) and Owyhee (9-3, 4-2) as the league tournament approaches Feb. 15-17 in Reno.
The girls have two league games remaining, today at home against Wells (14-9, 2-3) and Feb. 9 at league leader McDermitt.
Eureka lost at Wells 44-35 Jan. 12, and today’s game is between the teams that are vying for third and fourth place in the 1A Northern league playoffs Feb. 15-17.
At present, Mineral County, with a 13-game win streak, and Coleville are the two leaders in the west.
Gallagher said this Saturday, the Vandals have a non-league game hosting unbeaten White Pine (20-0).