The first three games for the Moffat County girls basketball team were easy.
The Bulldogs averaged 22 points more than their opponents in their first games at the Nike Tournament of Champions in Chandler, Ariz.
But Thursday's championship finale -- a 53-40 loss -- left a bitter taste in some team members' mouths.
"I think they assumed it would be easy," coach Craig Mortensen said, because of the first three games. "We'll learn from it, and we'll be fine."
Playing Bishop Montgomery of Torrance, Calif., in the Orange Division, the Bulldogs came out flat and never established a rhythm, Mortensen said.
"It was a great tournament and good experience," Mortensen said. "Now we'll have to evaluate it and see if we want to come back (to the tournament) next year."
Junior Markie Workman said Bishop was aggressive on the floor and that its shooters were successful.
"We didn't play together," Workman said. "We weren't connecting, and there was some bickering on the floor at each other."
Dropping the game, Moffat County loaded up the van and headed back to the hotel to get some rest before returning to Denver on Friday morning -- or so they thought.
Because of Denver Inter-
national Airport closing, the Bulldogs found themselves looking for a way out of Phoenix on Friday morning.
"We rented some vehicles, and now we're driving back," Mortensen said Friday. "We just need to get back without killing each other."
The Bulldogs have roomed together since last Saturday, and Mortensen said that the decision to drive was better than the other option presented at Phoenix's Sky Harbor Airport.
"We couldn't get a flight until Wednesday," Mortensen said. "But (the weather) was something we couldn't control."
Workman said the cabin fever is starting to build up among the team members, and that they are ready to get away from each other. She even admitted that she was mad when they found out their flight was cancelled.
"We definitely need to be apart for a little while," Workman said. "It wasn't the best way to end, but, at the same time, there wasn't anything we could do about it."