The Libby High School girls basketball team came back from winter break to double losses over the weekend, falling 46-24 to the Columbia Falls Wildkats and 51-21 to the Browning Indians.
After the game at Browning Saturday, Libby Head Coach Wally Winslow said that he felt the first quarter was good, with senior Samantha Miller hitting from the three point line twice.
After that, though, the Lady Loggers fell off, and had trouble getting a shot to fall.
With no points in the second quarter, Libby was already down 15 points at the half, and the Indians just expanded the deficit as they outscored the Lady Loggers in the third and fourth quarters.
However, Winslow said they are excited to get back to practice and to get some things figured out.
Libby’s misfortunes began a week before when senior Jayden Winslow -- the consistent point leader for the team -- suffered a knee injury.
Wally Winslow said it is not yet known how long she will be benched, as they are still awaiting the results of an MRI.
Still, Coach Winslow said that the rest of the team is showing their determination to plug the gaps left by the loss.
When asked about the intensity and energy senior Emma Gruber brought to bear against the Wildkats -- more than once snatching up the ball and cruising past defenders to the other end of the court to score -- Winslow said that she was not the only one stepping up Friday.
“She tried to fill the void of missing Jayden, and she did some things today that she doesn’t normally do: Shot some threes, was very aggressive on the rebounding, on the glass. And that was -- we need people to do that,” Winslow said. “And our girls will. I thought other girls stepped up too.”
Against the Wildkats, the Lady Loggers also faced a second quarter without a single point scored.
Winslow said as well as Columbia Falls did applying the pressure, the Wildkats may not have even been playing to their full potential Friday.
“They do a lot of things well; they have good length,” Winslow said. The Wildkats also keep the pressure constant, gradually building their way to a substantial lead.
“You know, you handle it, but eventually you make a couple mistakes, and it’s like an avalanche,” he said.
Despite the thrashing from Columbia Falls, Winslow had a forward-focused take on the outcome.
“Our girls we had on the court today did some really good stuff,” he said. “I was pleased with the way they did some things, and, you know, we didn’t do everything right, but we did enough things right to build some confidence and move forward.”
“So, there’s no head-hanging after that,” Winslow said.
Winslow said that he has a good team to work with, and expressed confidence in their ability to adapt to the challenges as they move positions and fill in the gaps.
“We have to try to get some people in some different spots, and that will take some time to get adjusted to that, but the girls are not going to change their demeanor and their attitude and who they are based on who is and is not on the court,” he said.
The Lady Loggers are a hardworking, coachable team, he said.
“They’ll listen to what we tell them and they’ll give us 100 percent, and we’ll just keep on playing basketball, ‘cause they like it,” he said.
The Lady Loggers play next today at Eureka in the Battle of the Kootenai at 7:30 p.m. They play again in Polson on Saturday at 4 p.m.
Friday, Jan. 4
Columbia Falls 47, Libby 24
CF: 11 18 12 6 - 47
L: 9 0 8 7 - 24
Columbia Falls: Maddie Robinson 4 points; Savannah Ellis 2 points; Lakia Mill 2 points; Josie Windover 5 points, 1-7 FT; Ryley Kahr 13 points, 0-1 FT; Paige Burger 6 points; Madison Horner 5 points, 3-4 FT; Trista Cowan 10 points, 2-4 FT
Libby: Emma Gruber 8 points; Samantha Miller 5 points; Sammee Bradeen 5 points; McKenzie Proffitt 2 points; Taylor Holm 4 points
Saturday, Jan. 5
Browning 51, Libby 21
B: 11 12 12 16 - 51
L: 8 0 6 7 - 21
Browning: Chaslin Kipp 4 points, 1-2 FT; Lacey Goss 4 points; Veronica Reed 9 points; Kelsey Mad Plume 2 points; Dawayia Polk 10 points, 4-6 FT; Walker Running Crane 3 points; Tatuin Running Crane 4 points, 2-3 FT; Tamika Guardipee 15 points, 1-3 FT
Libby: Syd Gier 2 points, 2-2 FT; Alli Collins 2 points, 0-2 FT; Emma Gruber 3 points, 3-4 FT; Samantha Miller 6 points; Sammee Bradeen 1 points, 1-2 FT; Isabelle Kapan 2 points, 2-2 FT; McKenzie Proffitt 3 points, 1-3 FT; Sheyla Gallagher 2 points, 2-2 FT