LINGLE – The Lingle-Fort Laramie girls’ basketball team fell to Encampment and Kaycee last Friday at the annual Dogger Classic.
In the morning session, the Lady Doggers came up short 51-41 to the Encampment Lady Tigers.
“We competed very well. It was a pretty tight, close, competitive game for this time of the year,” L-FL Coach Matt Cornelius said. “We played way young. I was proud of how we did in that game, but we couldn’t come up with the win in the end.”
Freshman Natalie Speckner gave L-FL an early 5-2 lead behind a 3-pointer and a pair of free throws.
The Lady Tigers scored the next 13 points before Speckner drained another triple.
Encampment pushed its lead double-digits midway through the second quarter.
The Lady Doggers found themselves down 26-19 at halftime.
L-FL quickly shifted the momentum in its favor, utilizing a full-court press.
Two minutes into the third quarter, the press resulted in seven straight points for the Lady Doggers to tie the game at 26.
“A full-court press is very difficult to deal with. Our girls worked hard,” Cornelius said. “It was a game changer at that time. Our full-court man defense is going to cause some major problems for some teams.”
Lingle could not get over the hump and retake the lead, but they stayed within five points of Encampment until the final seconds of the contest.
With 40 seconds left, trailing 46-41, the Lady Doggers were forced to go into foul mode to extend the game as long as possible.
The visitors knocked down their free throws, pushing its lead back to double digits as time expired.
Junior M’Lynn Hill led the Lady Doggers with 12 points and four rebounds, while Speckner added seven points, four boards and three steals. Sophomore Ashlee Hattan tossed in six points.
Later in the evening, L-FL took to the court against the Class 1A top-ranked Kaycee Lady Buckaroos.
Kaycee ran away with a 42-13 victory over the Lady Doggers.
Lingle managed to score eight points in the first quarter but failed to score again until midway through the fourth quarter.
“On the second game of the evening, our young kids played young,” Cornelius said. “We got rattled a little bit and couldn’t respond as well as we wanted to. You have to hand it to Kaycee. They play a very good, intense defense, and we didn’t respond very quick at all.”
Sophomore Baylee Skinner led the Lady Doggers with four points, while junior Tiah Meyer added three. Hattan, Speckner and sophomore Kamryn Rafferty added two apiece.
“We are still growing. We are going through growing pains,” Cornelius said. “We’ll get there, but it’ll take some time.”
The Lady Doggers (1-3) returns to the court on Friday, Jan. 8 at Crawford, Neb. (2-5) at 5:30 p.m. before returning home to face Guernsey-Sunrise (0-3) at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 9.