Makayla Camilletti, a Moffat County High School junior, defends Grand Junction’s Sydni Brandon as she drives to the hoop Wednesday in Grand Junction. The Bulldogs couldn’t overcome more than 35 turnovers in a 43-32 loss.

Dean Humphrey/Grand Junction Sentinel

Makayla Camilletti, a Moffat County High School junior, defends Grand Junction’s Sydni Brandon as she drives to the hoop Wednesday in Grand Junction. The Bulldogs couldn’t overcome more than 35 turnovers in a 43-32 loss.

Turnovers haunt MCHS girls in 43-32 loss in Grand Junction

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Box score from the MCHS girls varsity basketball team’s game Wednesday at Grand Junction High School:

(Team — 1st — 2nd — 3rd — 4th — final)

• Moffat County — 9 — 6 — 7 — 10 — 32

• Grand Junction — 9 — 14 — 4 — 16 — 43

MCHS leading scorers:

(Name — points)

• Lisa Camilletti — 12

• Annie Sadvar — 5

• Melissa Camilletti — 5

• Makayla Camilletti — 4

• Tori Snyder — 4

Matt Ray said the Moffat County High School girls varsity basketball team played a great game in every category but one Wednesday in Grand Junction.

But, it was the one category — turnovers — that cost the Bulldogs against Grand Junction High School.

Moffat County turned the ball over more than 35 times in a 43-32 loss to the Tigers.

“We worked hard and we hustled, but we just turned the ball over too many times,” said Ray, the Bulldogs’ head coach. “We played smart defense, we just rushed the ball and it is hard to win playing that type of game.”

Senior Melissa Camilletti — who leads the Bulldogs this season with 15.5 points per game — had about half of the team’s turnovers Wednesday and scored five points.

Ray said the offense was in too big of a hurry and didn’t wait for open passing lanes or open shots.

“Everything just seemed to be rush, rush, rush,” he said. “Our passes were rushed and too quick. Our offense just didn’t play as well as it has in past games.”

The Bulldogs (7-5 overall, 0-1 Western Slope League) were tied with Grand Junction, 9-9, after the first quarter and at 15-15 into the second when turnovers started to pile up.

The Tigers (10-4 overall) scored eight straight points and the Bulldogs only pulled back within four the rest of the game.

“After the first quarter, I guess we decided to push the pace for some reason,” Ray said. “When (Grand Junction) caused a turnover, our defense had no chance because they just took it down and scored. You can’t do that against a good team.”

On Dec. 17, the Bulldogs beat Grand Junction, 47-46, in the Montrose Tournament.

MCHS hit seven 3-pointers in the first half in the first game, but Ray said the Tigers made adjustments Wednesday to take away the Bulldogs’ perimeter game.

“Grand Junction put pressure on our outside shot and made us have to get the ball inside,” he said. “We did alright getting the ball inside, but we needed to reverse the ball more. Instead, we tried to thread the needle and played out of control.”

Junior Lisa Camilletti led MCHS with 12 points and senior Annie Sadvar matched Melissa’s output with five points.

Ray said Lisa was one of the stable players on the team Wednesday night.

“Lisa worked the ball hard inside and got fouls and shot well,” he said. “She made good adjustments against the (Grand Junction) defense and played level headed and in control.”

Defensively, Ray said the Bulldogs held their own.

“Bailey (Hellander) had maybe her best game with over 15 rebounds and more than 10 steals,” he said. “We went in with a game plan and ran it well the whole game. But, when you have that many turnovers, it is a different game.”

The Bulldogs play Eagle Valley at 6 p.m. Friday at home.

Ray said Wednesday’s loss hurt, but it is only one loss and the team will bounce back.

“We need to be more patient and make sure passes and shots are wide open or don’t take them,” he said. “We have to protect the ball and not hope it gets there, but make sure it gets there.

“The bottom line is it was one game and we have big league games coming up and we need to be ready for them so we can compete in the league.”

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