For the Dolores High School girls basketball team, the end of the 2013-14 season was painful and swift.
Bears lose to Ridgway
Opening last week's play in Ridgway on Feb. 21, the Bears fell victim to one of the San Juan Basin League's top teams, losing 74-36.
Contributing heavily to the Bears loss were defensive struggles, which allowed Ridgway to build a 46-18 lead by halftime.
Although the Bears continued to battle hard, aided by senior Brianna Schwartz and sophomore Nichole Kibel, the large deficit proved too much to overcome.
In all, Schwartz and Kibel combined for 28 points as each guard chipped in 14.
Bears defeated by Mancos
Hoping to pick up a win against Mancos on Feb. 22, the Bears were defeated again, losing 59-56 on their home floor.
Playing a key role for the Bears was senior Brianna Schwartz, who, scoring a career high 35 points, nearly willed her team to victory.
Unfortunately for the Bears, Schwartz's stellar performance was not enough however as the team was outscored 33-29 in the second half.
Complimenting Schwartz's 35 points, sophomore Larissa Umberger scored seven points and junior Taylor Elder scored six.
Bears end season with loss to Mancos
Looking to advance into the District Tournament with a win in Mancos on Feb. 25, the Bears suffered their second consecutive three-point loss, falling 42-39 to their rivals.
Playing extremely well early in the contest, the Bears jumped out to a 23-14 halftime lead courtesy of a balanced scoring attack led by Schwartz.
In all, four Bears players, including Schwartz, Elder, Umberger and Kibel, scored in the first half.
"We played good defense and our offense was clicking," said Bears' head coach Tim Kercher. "We were making shots and playing our game."
Unfortunately for Dolores, things began falling apart early in the second half as Mancos closed out the third quarter on a 10-2 run.
Entering the fourth quarter with a 30-28 lead, the Bears did their best to hold on, could not keep pace with the Bluejays, who scored twice in the final minute to pull ahead 42-38.
Schwartz added one last free throw for the Bears before time expired.
In all, Schwartz scored 18 points in her final high school game to pace the Bears.
"We're going to miss her," said Kercher of Schwartz. "What a year she had. She kept us in a lot of games."
Overall, the Bears finished the season with a 7-13 record.