OROSI — The wheels came off the bus for the Hanford West girls basketball team on Thursday in its 67-34 loss to Roosevelt in the Dinuba-Orosi Holiday Classic.
Trailing 33-21 at halftime, Hanford West came alive offensively in the second quarter and seemed to be in a much better position to make a run in the second half.
After scoring four points in the first quarter and enduring a 13-0 run that crossed over quarters, the Huskies rattled off 17 points in the second and cut the 12-point deficit to seven with 2:38 left in the half.
Hanford West guard Madison Sousa got the second started with a runner in the lane. Nayleen Galaviz came right back down and hit an elbow jumper, equaling the team’s first quarter output in under two minutes.
Sylinda Villado hit a free throw to complete a 3-point-play and the Huskies went on a 9-2 run. In all, seven different players scored a buck in the second and their run was sparked with the girls boxing out and finally finishing around the rim — something that didn’t happen in the first quarter.
But it didn’t last long as they reverted back to their old ways and Roosevelt closed out the half on a 7-2 run to re-establish a double digit lead. Still, they looked a lot better for a stretch and showed how well they can play when they’re clicking.
“We tend to watch a lot when the shot goes up, I do that myself, so we need to get better at reacting,” Sousa said. “We need to get a feel for the opposite team and get a butt on them and push them out to get the rebound.”
Hanford West was almost shut out with Roosevelt starting the quarter on a 22-0 run. Jaslin LeGarreta hit a desperation 3-pointer off the right wing with 10 seconds left to avoid the shutout, but the Huskies were outscored 25-3 and trailed 58-24 headed into the fourth quarter.
“We were a little lost on the defensive end,” Hanford West coach Torreya Edwards said. “Their press was a little bit too much. We turned the ball over coming out. We couldn’t score.”
The Huskies allowed Roosevelt to get far too many second-chance points, were beat on the fast break each time and couldn’t handle the defensive pressure. They seemed to panic each time a double team was brought in the back court and always made an errant pass, which turned into an easy two points.
“I think we got into our heads,” Hanford West guard Chelene Howard said. “We had no communication … we didn’t help each other out. It was more of an independent game.”
Hanford West managed to outscore Roosevelt 10-9 in the final quarter, but the 33-point loss was the biggest of the season for the Huskies. The loss dropped Hanford West into the fifth place bracket and they will continue in the tournament through today.
“To move forward, we have to realize we have to trust each other and communicate on defense and help each other,” Edwards said. “That’s going to be the key of winning basketball games.”