Girls basketball optimistic following loss

Juliana Poe, Sports Editor

Coming off of a third-place finish at the Hays shootout two weekends back, the Manhattan girls basketball team went head-to-head against Seaman, who proceeded to knock the girls off their feet.

“We didn’t come out as strong as we needed to,” junior Taylor Claussen said. “We got behind … and we couldn’t get our feet under us to climb back [up].”

Going into the Friday night game, the team expected a challenge and were eager to compete.

“We were hyped [and] excited to play against them,” freshman Destiny Yates said. “We knew that they were challenging, [yet] had our mindset of winning that game.”

However, stepping out onto the court the team faced several drawbacks. Play after play, the girls couldn’t keep the ball in their possession, and when they had the ball, they struggled to keep control of it. 

“Defensively, we gave up too many easy baskets,” head coach Scott Mall said. “Offensively, we just needed to move … the ball better [and] capitalize on the [strengths] that we got.”

Seaman began the game defending the full-court rather than just at the half, which is typically seen when a team is looking to force a turnover. Unfortunately, this tactic threw MHS for a loop. Seaman also had the advantage of several three-point shots, which kept Manhattan behind in score. Additionally, according to Yates, throughout the game, the girls were “fouling on every single play.”

“They started full-court pressing us,” Yates said. “We gave away a bunch of just silly mistakes [such as] throwing the ball away, traveling, not finishing on our layups [and] our shots weren’t falling in.”

According to Yates, the score at the half was 32-11, with Manhattan falling behind by 21 points.

“We struggled on our offense. We weren’t really getting in the flow of things,” Yates said. “It was choppy towards the end. But we scored a couple [of] points, which made a difference.”

Determined to not go home with a loss, the girls attempted to make a come back by putting more effort into their defense. While MHS added 17 points to their 11, Seaman continued to push back, scoring nine more than Manhattan collected in the second half. By game, MHS fell to Seaman by a margin of 30 points with a final score of 58-28.

“One part that … made us look up is [when] a few leaders on the team step[ped] up and kind of lit a fire under [us],” Claussen said. “Sadly, by the time that had happened, there was not much that we could do to get the score back up.”

Tonight at 6:15 p.m. the girls will play Junction City in their first home game of the season, looking to bounce back from their loss. On Friday, the team will hit the road and travel to Hayden.

“We told each other to keep our heads up and Coach Mall said it’s not going to be an easy game,” Yates said. “None of these teams in this [league] are going to be an easy game, [but] we’re going to take our chances and excel and try to execute as well as we can.”