Inside game poses problems for Crested Butte
It was a tough Christmas Break for the Lady Titans. Several players missed practice due to injuries or illnesses, leaving coach MaryMike Haley with as few as five players to run practice.
Fortunately, the Lady Titans had a warm-up game on Friday, January 11 before they had to face the number-one seeded team in the district, Norwood, on Saturday, January 12.
The Lady Titans effectively shook off their Christmas Break blues against the Moffat Cowboys, or Cowgirls in this case, cruising to a 64-10 win.
The Lady Titans shut out the Cowgirls 14-0 in the first quarter with baskets from the usual suspects, senior Emma Coburn and junior Emma Vosburg, as well as buckets from sophomore Sydney Loyed and junior Jessie Frame.
The Lady Titans continued to cruise in the second quarter, taking a 20-0 lead before Moffat managed its first basket of the game.
Coburn, who led the team with 25 points, 17 rebounds and 12 steals, and Vosburg traded off scoring in the second quarter, leading the team to a 26-4 lead by halftime.
Frame opened the third quarter on fire, scoring four of her seven points in the opening minute and pulling down two of her six rebounds in the game.
Crested Butte closed the game scoring 15 points in the fourth quarter, to close out the 64-10 win with authority and set their sights on Norwood the following night.
The Norwood Mavericks came into Mt. Olympus on Saturday, January 12 as the number-one ranked team in the district.
Within the first three minutes of the game, though, the Lady Titans knocked them down off their pedestal with its full court press.
Crested Butte took a 6-0 lead on baskets from Vosburg and Coburn and strong effort on the boards by Frame, forcing the Norwood coach to call a timeout.
Crested Butte’s defense created numerous opportunities throughout the first quarter, only to be stymied by ball-handling miscues on offense.
Norwood clawed back in the game but Frame capped the first quarter with a bucket in the closing seconds, giving the Lady Titans a tenuous 11-7 lead.
The Lady Mavericks’ defense keyed on Vosburg to disrupt the Crested Butte offense and managed to take the lead after opening the second quarter with an 8-0 run.
Norwood continued with heavy half-court pressure on Crested Butte in the second half to build a 29-21 lead midway through the third quarter.
Down eight points, the Lady Titans rallied back with a 10-2 run kicked off by a pass from Frame to Vosburg underneath, for two of Vosburg’s 20 points that game.
Coburn hit a 10-foot jumper to follow, Frame crashed the offensive boards for another Lady Titan bucket.
Vosburg tied the game 31-31 at the end of the third quarter with a steal and basket, setting up for a tense fourth quarter.
The two teams traded baskets in the first half of the fourth quarter and Norwood resorted to what made them number one in the district—their two low post players.
With heavy pressure on Norwood’s guards and tight marks underneath in the low post, the Lady Titans held the Norwood stars at bay until the final four minutes of the game.
The Lady Mavericks managed to exploit the fatigued Crested Butte defense, dumping the ball repeatedly to their two low post players.
Once they had the ball the two Maverick players were nearly automatic turning to the hole for buckets.
The play and solid free throw shooting led Norwood to a four-point lead with one minute left in the game. The Lady Mavericks sealed the deal with tough defense and sank two more free throws to ice a 50-44 win over Crested Butte.
"Overall, I thought our team player really well," says Haley. "We just have to get more aggressive on the boards but I was really proud with how they executed the press."
The Lady Titans look to recover from the Norwood game as they head to Debeque on Friday, January 18 and then to Plateau Valley on Monday, January 21.