The Lady Dogs’ hot start cooled off with losses to Libby and Browning last weekend.
On Friday Whitefish hosted Libby for a battle with the Loggers.
Libby took a four-point first quarter lead.
Whitefish started closing the gap in the fourth, cutting Libby’s 10-point cushion down to five, but they couldn’t shrink the lead any more. Libby won 37-32
Head coach Bob Bolam said his team never gave up in the comeback effort.
“We learned some things from it, how to defend a good player [like Jayden Winslow] which we didn’t do all the time, but we’ll learn from that and get better moving forward. We hung in there, we never got ahead but we scrapped back a few times to get it close. The girls kept fighting hard,” he said.
The team cut short its comeback effort in the last 30 seconds of regulation as well, when some confusion among the players allowed Libby to run out the clock instead of Whitefish fouling the opponent to stretch out the remaining seconds.
“They didn’t really understand who we didn’t want to foul but who we probably did want to foul, then it got down to a point where it didn’t matter, when it was down to the last few seconds,” Bolam said. “There was just a little bit of miscommunication.”
Things weren’t as close the following day in Browning.
Browning built on a 20-5 first quarter run and a 28-9 third quarter for the easy 85-55 win.
Claire Carloss led the team with 15 points, while Payton Kastella added 10.
Bolam said the defensive effort needs to be better than what his team showed on Saturday.
“That was a tough trip for us. Defensively we didn’t show up very well. Those girls, you leave them open and they hit everything. They scored 85 on us, but that is tough to swallow,” he said. “The good news is we broke through a little bit offensively. Scoring 55 was good for us, but giving up 85 was very hard.”
On Friday Whitefish will travel down to Frenchtown for a north versus south matchup.
Looking ahead, Bolam said he’s just hoping to keep putting the pieces together and put his team in a good position to win.
“We’re still just trying to get better, both defensively and offensively. We’re working really hard to get better on what we can control and limit our turnovers,” he said. “Against Frenchtown we need to go down there and do that, play a good game and see what happens. We’re hoping to go down and win a game. Every game is going to be tough for us, we’re going to have to compete every game to try to get a victory, so you can’t take anything for granted.”
Libby 13 9 7 8 — 37
Whitefish 9 5 5 13 — 32
LIBBY: Alli Collins 7, Jayden Winslow 21, Sammie Braden 2, McKenzie Proffit 6
WHITEFISH: Kaiah Moore 2, Hope Brown 4, Claire Carloss 7, Gracie Smyley 5, Payton Kastella 6, Marlee Bender 8
Whitefish 5 21 9 20 – 55
Browning 20 17 28 20 – 85
WHITEFISH: Kit Anderson 4, Kaiah Moore 7, Hope Brown 2, Claire Carloss 15, Gracie Smyley 6, Payton Kastella 10, Jadi Walburn 5, Marlee Bender.
BROWNING: Chalissa Kipp 3, Chaslin Kipp 12, Veronica Reed 5, Kelsey Mad Plume 2, Danayea Polk 19, Walker Running Crane 10, Dulci Skunkcap 11, Tamika Guardipee 23.