By Dave Maxwell
The Vandal girls suffered their second league loss last week with an 58-50 setback to Owyhee.
Despite Eureka sophomore Gracie Garrett having her highest scoring game of the season with 26 points, she didn’t get much help from her teammates. Carlie Wells added only six points.
Coach Travis Gallagher said, “It was a tough game all the way through. Pretty tight. It would have been tied at halftime, but Owyhee made a half court shot at the buzzer for 28-25 lead. Didn’t feel real bad about that though.”
“I anticipated Owyhee would be tough this second game. We did well up there [a 60-47 win Jan. 12], We shot the ball well and they didn’t. This time, they shot the ball well and we didn’t. Macee McKinney scored 19 for the Braces and Cameron Paradise scored 20. We just couldn’t slow them down very much. But on the other hand, they couldn’t stop Gracie either. She shot the ball well for us, but the other players not so much.”
In a tight game,with about 2 and a half minutes left, Gallagher said he thought the pressure got to the team. “We trailed by one at that time, but then turned the ball over four out of six times.” Owyhee took advantage and extended their lead to an eight-point win.
The win for Owyhee evens the series with Eureka at 12 wins each since 2007.
The Braves and the Vandals might meet again in the regional playoffs in Reno.
The night before, Feb. 1, the girls had a big win over Carlin 35-12. Gallagher said he played most of the JV players in the second half and the Vandals allowed the Railroaders only six points in the second half.
Gracie Garrett was high point for Eureka with 10 points. Leading scorer for Carlin was Jayden Ginter with six.
“Our defense played well, kept them down on scoring,” he said.
The Vandals are now 25-0 against Carlin since 2007.
Both Eureka and Owyhee still have one more meeting with league leader McDermitt (13-3, 5-0) before the playoffs.
Gallagher said, “If we can win out, we can probably climb back up to second place. I’d like to be there, and not be on the same side of the bracket with McDermitt until the finals.”
This week, the Lady Vandals are on the road Feb. 8 for their only game, at Wells (14-8, 1-4). “Always a tough game to go to Wells, Gallagher said.”
The four-team boys and girls East-West regional playoffs, hosted by the West, will be held Feb.21-22 at Wooster and Hug High Schools in Reno.
At the same time, the South-Central League regional tournament will take place at Reed and Wooster High Schools.
The top two finalists, both boys and girls, will advance to the state tournament March 1-2 at The Orleans in Las Vegas.