Can knowledge be gained from beating another team by nearly 40 points, as the Moffat County girls basketball team did Tuesday night against Steamboat?
According to Bulldog senior guard Asleigh Mann, yes.
"We've been working on defense these last couple of nights," she said of what she took from the win, "and no matter how much you're beating a team by, just to keep hustling and just work on our fundamentals and do what it takes to make the team better."
Working on fundamentals is the approach coach Craig Mortensen is taking toward this weekend's two home games, and not so much focusing on scouting on Western Slope league foes Palisade and Delta.
Instead, the Moffat County High School coach is more concerned about his Bulldog team.
"The main thing is if we execute and do what we're supposed to do, we'll be fine," he said. "I don't think anyone is going to throw anything at us that we haven't seen or that we can't adjust to. But we're hoping that if we do what we should, that they'll be making adjustments to us."
"We just want to go out and play with intensity, play as a team and play good defense, and work the ball inside," she said.
MCHS (11-1 overall, 3-0 in Western Slope) hosts the Palisade Bulldogs today at 6 p.m., and the Delta Panthers at 4 p.m. Saturday.
"We're looking for two good games," Mortensen said. "Our main objective is take another step forward and get better."
Mortensen said he doesn't know much about the young Palisade team.
"Last year, they had seven or eight seniors on the team who played a lot," he said. "They had a good JV team with some good post players, and some fairly decent perimeter players. I think they have a good coach. They'll come at us and give us their best shot."
The coach knew one thing for sure about about Delta: the Panthers are undefeated in Western Slope play (3-4, 3-0).
"You never know," Mortensen said. "They might be pretty good. It looks like they're improving."
The Panthers have been paced by Keisha Beres, who is averaging 23 points and 11 rebounds in reported games.
"That one girl is scoring a lot of points, who looks like she's post," Mortensen said.
For the Bulldogs, Angela Charchalis leads the team in points, at 14.6 per game, assists, 5.1, and steals, 5.0.
"Those are pretty impressive stats for a point guard," Mortensen said.
Markie Workman (12.2 points, 6.2 rebounds) and Cayla Maneotis (7.4 points, 6.8 rebounds) are the other MCHS statistical leaders.
More important to Morten-sen is the Bulldogs' 41 percent shooting -- "which is pretty good for a high school team," he said; the team's 57 percent shooting clip from the free-throw line -- "we should be at least in the high 60s"; and the fact that the Bulldogs are out-rebounding opponents by eight boards a game -- "which is good but I think it could be better."