By: Kate Baker
On Saturday, February 8, the Lady Mustangs found themselves in a position that no Silver Lake girls’ basketball player had been in for six years– a chance to claim the championship title of the Twin Valley Conference tournament. Unfortunately, the Mustangs fell to the undefeated Raiders of Lawrence-Nelson to earn second place. To claim their spot in the championship game, the Mustangs had to defeat Red Cloud on Monday and Blue Hill on Thursday.
In Monday’s match-up, the Mustangs found success early, starting the game 17-2. The second and third quarter remained pretty competitive, with the Mustangs narrowly outscoring the Warriors by four points. However, a strong fourth quarter secured the 57-20 victory, advancing the Mustangs to the semifinal match to face the Bobcats of Blue Hill. After losing by four points previously in the season, the Mustangs were looking to avenge the loss. It was a game of defense, with the Bobcats being held to merely 27 points. Silver Lake packed in the defense, making Blue Hill search for jump shots. The strategy worked, holding Blue Hill to a 27% shooting percentage. On the other end of the floor, the Mustangs adjusted well on offense to find scoring opportunities for all players and found success from behind the arch shooting 50%. The victory on Thursday advanced Silver Lake to the championship game held at Hastings College.
The Mustangs fell behind quickly in the first quarter of the match-up on Saturday against Lawrence-Nelson. After battling about a week previously, the Mustangs knew that the Raiders were a force to be reckoned with, with the ability to knock down jump shots and attack the basket effectively. In the first half, the Mustangs struggled to find the net, with their first point coming late in the first quarter off of a free throw. Going into half time, the Mustangs had only managed to put up four points while trailing the Raiders by 25. The second half boded better for the Mustangs; however, the first half deficit was too much to overcome, with the final score remaining 41-17. The Mustangs earned second place and advanced their record to 14-4 after the week. They look ahead to the last week of regular season play, facing Shelton, Giltner, and Meridian before Sub-Districts.