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Dec 132013
 

Had the Lady Roadrunners played the first eight minutes like they did the final eight minutes, Tuesday night’s outcome against defending state champion Winslow may have been a different one. As it was, a poor start to the game put them in a hole they spent the rest of the night fighting to get out of, and they eventually lost to the Lady Bulldogs, 62-58.
Winslow forced Holbrook to turn the ball over early in the game with its press and capitalized to build an 18-7 lead after eight minutes.
“We know how to beat their press, but we just didn’t execute the way we needed to,” said Holbrook Coach Greg Perkins. “Give them credit, they are a good team which will make you pay for mistakes and they got the early lead.”
In the second period the Lady Roadrunners started to get more aggressive with the ball and forced their way to the free throw line, where they made five of nine, but they still trailed by 12 at the half.
After a sluggish first two minutes of the second half, Holbrook’s bench entered the game and gave the team a bit of a spark defensively.
Dena Kinlicheenie and Quanyyah Lester netted five points, and Rochelle Nez scored eight in the paint. Teyah Goldtooth canned a pair of threes to help Holbrook narrow the margin to just six heading to the fourth.
In the fourth a couple more mental mistakes by Holbrook and one or two bad turnovers pushed Winslow back to a 10-point lead with less than a minute remaining. In the final minute the Lady Roadrunners showed a lot of heart, closing the gap down to three with six seconds left on the clock. Winslow eventually made one final free throw to secure a wild four-point win.
“I have to give my girls a ton of credit for the effort they put into the second half. I’m not a big fan of moral victories, but after the game I told the girls their comeback effort earned them a lot of respect from people who have already written us off this year,” said Coach Perkins. “We didn’t get the win, but we proved to ourselves that we can play with the best team in our division when we put our minds to it. Now we need to carry that type of effort over into our practices and into the rest of our games, and play four complete quarters each night. Winning games is certainly our goal, but if we can gain knowledge and confidence from a loss like this then we will turn this loss into a positive thing. “
Goldtooth led all scorers with 25 points. Nez added 14, Kinlicheenie came off the bench to net 7, followed by Summer Olney with 4; Shandie Demuth and Adriana Monroe, 3 each; and Lester, 2.
Holbrook made 17 of 25 free throws and hit seven three-point shots.
Winslow was led by Marcella Joe with 17 points. Shandiin Armao added 15, followed by Halle Hayes with 10; Tannon Tom and Jacey Sangster, 8 each; Kaelyn Bitsoi, 3; and Michaela Bia, 1.
The Bulldogs also shot 25 free throws, converting 12. They hit two three-point shots, both by Tom.
With the loss Holbrook dropped to 7-2 on the season. After playing at Valley Sanders on Saturday, Dec. 14, the Roadrunners will have nearly a week off to prepare for a home match up with Ganado on Friday, Dec. 20. The team will be competing in the Valley Christian Tournament scheduled Thursday and Friday, Dec. 26 and 27, in Chandler.