Hosting the Sargent Farmers on Saturday in Dolores, the Lady Bears trailed 13-7 after the first quarter of play.
But they were fortunate to be within striking distance.
The visiting Farmers were out-hustling Dolores on the offensive glass to create extra opportunities, and although they were getting good looks, they were off in the opening frame.
Kortni Spurlock opened the second quarter with two free throws for the home squad and Tatum Majors added a bucket to pull Dolores within three. But the Lady Bears were then plagued by turnovers and failed to score again until midway through the fourth quarter.
Sargent capitalized on their drought to turn a 13-10 lead into a 51-10 advantage and went on to win 64-17.
“I think some of it is just being young and inexperienced,” Dolores head coach Tiffany Hill said of her team’s struggles. “And they get excited that the plays are working so they try to force it. We had a lot of turnovers. I think 36 this game and it killed us.”
Following the Lady Bears’ contest, the Dolores boys took the court riding a three-game win streak.
Sargent employed a full-court press with occasional traps, speeding the game up. And while the pressure led to a handful of Dolores turnovers, the Bears were able to beat the Farmers down court multiples times for easy looks and trailed 17-10 after one.
Another way Dolores benefited from Sargent’s pressure was with free points.
The Farmers had reached and hacked too often attempting to come up with steals, and the Bears got into the bonus early. They used 14 second-quarter free throws to keep things close and go to the break down 37-27.
In the third quarter, however, the Farmers’ pressure began to take its toll.
The Bears forced the issue on offense and Sargent capitalized on turnovers and got leak-outs for easy buckets to pull ahead 63-34 entering the fourth.
Dolores junior Justin Purkat tried to spark a comeback with three 3-pointers in the final frame, but Sargent’s lead was too great and the Farmers held off the charge to win 76-52.
“I thought they did well tonight for a half, but in the third quarter the wheels fell off a little bit,” said head coach Larry Schwartz. “They regained their composure and we chipped away a little bit, and I was proud of what they did tonight.”