A fourth-quarter comeback by the Moffat County High School girls varsity basketball team fell short Saturday when the Glenwood Springs Demon hit a lay-up at the buzzer for the win, 50-48.
Trailing, 40-24, entering the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs used a 10-2 run and a lay-up with under 10 seconds to tie the game.
Caught celebrating, the Glenwood Springs Demons took advantage with a breakaway lay-up at the end to win.
While his team couldn’t finish the comeback, MCHS head coach Matt Ray said he was proud of his players, nonetheless.
“The fact that we were able to come back was great for the team,” he said. “The girls got down and battled back, so I am proud and it shows the character they have.”
Heading into the half, the Bulldogs trailed 22-18.
The Demons came out strong with an 18-2 run in the third quarter to go up 20.
Nike Cleverly, an MCHS senior, said the team was too content with their performance at the half, accounting for the slow start in the third quarter.
“In the locker room after the first half, we were proud of our execution,” she said. “We didn’t carry it over and we were tired coming out.”
Ray said he wasn’t sure what caused the flat start to open the second half.
“We had a great first half, being up at one point, and we made our second half game plan during the break,” he said. “I don’t know what happened, but it just did, and if I knew, it wouldn’t happen.”
Led by senior Lauren Roberts, who finished with 19 points, the Bulldogs doubled their point total in the fourth quarter with consistent shooting and strong defense.
Trailing by five, the Bulldogs put in a jump shot to pull within three, stole the Demons’ inbound pass and Roberts put in a lay-up to put the score at 47 -46 with 49 seconds left.
Following a foul by MCHS, the Demons’ hit the first free throw and missed the second.
MCHS junior Melissa Camilletti then powered her way into the lane for the equalizer before the eventual Demons’ game winner.
“In the fourth quarter, we had a few little errors that led to the loss,” Ray said. “We were able to battle back from 20 points down to tie it up and it is always positive that we didn’t give up.
“We felt we were always in the game, and the girls played that way.”
Cleverly said the team can take away from the loss a lot of good lessons.
“We should have come out harder in the third quarter, so we can learn form that,” she said. “We have to play every quarter as hard as we can and control the tempo.”
Still, Cleverly said her team came together in the end.
“We fought back and it came down to the last shot and (Glenwood Springs) was able to finish,” she said. “Everyone did their part in the fourth.”
Although the end didn’t favor the Bulldogs, Ray said the players could use what happened to better the team.
“We practice last-second shots in practice,” he said. “It went from practice to the game and now we know why it happened, so we don’t let it happen again.”
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