After a close loss and an unsteady win, the Bulldogs girls basketball team was as good as it’s been all season Tuesday.
On the strength of a 26-3 third quarter, Moffat County buried Gunnison for a 76-26 win. They also improved to 10-4 in the Western Slope League, keeping pace with Cedaredge and Olathe (both 11-4 and inactive Tuesday).
“We played really well today,” head coach Matt Ray said. “Today the girls came out and played their best game overall that they played all year, I think.”
When the Bulldogs hosted the Cowboys last December, they struggled to shut down the team and came away with an eight-point win. Post player Jordan Wallin scored 24 points to keep the Cowboys a threat throughout the second half.
Neither were a problem Tuesday as Wallin scored just four points and the other Cowboys were quiet from the field.
“Defensively, we pretty much dominated,” Ray said. “We shut them down, and we were patient on offense and scored a good amount of points.”
The Bulldogs held a 16-point lead after giving up just 16 points in the first half. Then they really took over the game.
Katelyn Peroulis led all scorers with 15 points, while Leah Camilletti (12), Allie Ehlers (12) and Lauren Samuelson (10) all chipped in with double-digit scoring as well.
“At halftime, I said we can’t let up. We’ve got to make a statement,” Ray said. “They came out, and they did.”
Short-handed boys team struggles with shooting
Injuries, foul trouble and poor shooting came together at the wrong time for Moffat County as it battled a game Gunnison opponent.
Playing without Javen Gumber due to illness and missing Joe Camilletti for the majority of Tuesday’s game, the Bulldogs couldn’t hold off the Cowboys on the road, losing 64-55 and falling a game back of the Western Slope League lead.
“All the credit goes to Gunnison tonight for just playing a great game,” head coach Eric Hamilton said. “The guys that we had tonight played super hard, and we shot very poorly. We missed a lot of good shots, they hit a lot of good shots. We didn’t capitalize on our possessions.”
Moffat County started out slow, put up just 13 points in the first quarter and nine in the second, giving the team its lowest scoring half of the season. But the Bulldogs came out hot in the third quarter, using a 9-0 run to take an early 31-26 lead.
The Cowboys did not fold, though, keeping it close through the third and early fourth before taking a 48-46 lead with 3:40 remaining. They were able to close out the game with rebounding and foul shooting, while Moffat County couldn’t hit the shots it needed to come back.
Bulldogs center Javen Gumber did not travel to Gunnison with an illness, and guard Joe Camilletti took a knock above his eye and was unavailable for the second half. With a shorter bench than usual, Moffat County battled foul trouble all game and couldn’t close it out in the fourth quarter.
“We basically played with six guys tonight, and those guys played tough,” Hamilton said. “We came out in the second half and built a nice little lead, but Gunnison kept coming at us. We’ve got to pick our heads up because we’ve got two more games, and then it’s playoffs.”