Lady Bighorns learn from first loss of the season
Oasis Academy’s Lady Bighorns dropped their first games of the season during the West Coast Jamboree, claiming a single win out of three games over New Year’s weekend.
The Lady Bighorns played all California schools, facing Concord, Pacific Collegiate and Oceana, all larger schools according to Oasis coach Dusty Casey.
In a fourth quarter turnaround, Saturday, Oasis defeated the Oceana Lady Sharks, 37-31. Oceana led at the start of the quarter 28-23, but the Lady Bighorns rallied and overpowered Oceana’s defense.
The first quarter was close with Oceana gaining a small lead, 8-5. The Lady Sharks broke away in the second quarter, though, solidly outscoring Oasis to enter halftime with a 21-12 lead. The Lady Bighorns recovered in the third quarter, fighting their way back to cut the lead to five.
Sadie O’Flaherty led Oasis with 15 points including a three-pointer and four free throws. Brooklyn Whitaker and Mariah Snooks were also leaders, each scoring nine points with three free throws.
Casey said the Bighorns had problems with their defense in the first half and gave up easy rebounds. At halftime, however, he said they made adjustments and the players responded well to them.
“We dominated them defensively and finally started hitting some shots,” Casey said.
On Thursday, Oasis had its first taste of defeat, losing 56-29 to Concord. The Lady Minutemen quickly leapt ahead, entering halftime 31-15.
Whitaker led Oasis with 14 points from two free throws; O’Flaherty was close behind her with nine points.
“Our half court defense was solid, but then we’d give up a rebound for second chance points,” Casey said. “They also got a lot of points in their fast break, as we were not playing smart transition defense.”
Friday’s game against Pacific Collegiate was another hard loss, ending 49-18. O’Flaherty led the Oasis baskets with 11 points and one trey; Whitaker scored five points, including three free throws, while Savannah Robinson added two points.
Casey said the Lady Bighorns competed well, though the scores might not show it. He said their issue against Pacific Collegiate came in shooting the ball. He said the Oasis players missed several easy layups and had a number of turnovers leading to easy baskets by the Lady Pumas.
Casey said his players, predominately freshmen and sophomores, learned a lot about playing at varsity level — he said they would be focusing on positioning for rebounds, defensive transition and ball handling going forward. He also noted they were down four players and only had eight at the tournament.
The Lady Bighorns play again Saturday in Tonopah, then host Excel Christian on Monday at 5:30 p.m. They were scheduled to host Yerington today, but the game was rescheduled to Jan. 22.