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Cowgirls fall behind early and never recover in 44-25 home loss to the La Pine Hawks

LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Teagan Freeman attempts to drive on La Pine's Autumn Gerard during the Cowgirls' 44-25 loss to the Hawks Tuesday night in Prineville. Freeman led the Cowgirls in scoring with 11 points in the contest. With the loss, Crook County dropped to 0-4 on the season, while the Hawks improved to 3-3. The La Pine Hawks ran out to an 8-0 lead and were never headed as they rolled to a 44-25 win over the Crook County Cowgirls Tuesday night in non-league basketball action.

"We didn't come out strong at the beginning and that hurt us," Crook County head coach Heidi Lea said following the game. "I think they watched our JVs do well and kind of thought that they were going to do as well. (The JV team won 49-11). We didn't play with any intensity and that kills us."

The host Cowgirls struggled to get going early in the contest, failing to score until midway through the opening period.

Crook County finally scored on a Teagan Freeman three-pointer with just 3:43 left in the first quarter.

"Their JV wasn't as good and we went in thinking that maybe their varsity was the same," Freeman said. "I guess we didn't expect them to be that good, so it was a little frustrating because we didn't work as hard as we should have."

The Cowgirls closed to within four at 14-10 as Freeman nailed a second three at the end of the first period.

When Freeman hit her third three of the contest just seconds into the second quarter, it looked like the Cowgirls were rolling.

"I felt like we were going to keep up with them and stay at a good pace," Freeman said.

However, the Hawks regrouped, scoring 13 of the next 15 points as they rolled to a 27-15 halftime lead.

Foul trouble played a big part in the La Pine run as starters Liz Barker and Dallas Hutchins both sat on the bench the entire second quarter in foul trouble.

Neither player was a factor the remainder of the game, with Hutchins eventually fouling out in the fourth quarter.

"That's twice that Dallas and Liz have gotten two fouls in the first quarter," Lea said. "They have got to learn how to play under control. Both of them sat the entire second quarter, and we can't afford that."

The third quarter saw both teams struggle to take care of the ball. In one stretch there were nine consecutive turnovers with neither team able to get a shot.

The Cowgirls continued to struggle offensively, scoring just three points in the period.

La Pine wasn't much better, managing just six points in the stanza. Still, that left the Hawks with a 33-18 lead heading into the final period.

"A lot of us started to hang our heads," Freeman said. "I think since the score was going down we kind of gave up."

Both teams played better offensively in the fourth quarter, but Crook County was unable to close the gap as the Hawks held on for the win.

As has happened most of the year, the Cowgirls struggled to take care of the ball. Crook County finished with 29 turnovers in the game, compared to 18 for the Hawks.

LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Heather Ptomey looks to pass after being cut off on the baseline. Ptomey, who is one of just three seniors on the Cowgirl roster, had one rebound and one assist in the game.In addition, La Pine outrebounded Crook County 30-24.

"We keep telling the girls the same thing," Lea said. "The turnovers and the one shot and done — that kills us. I don't think La Pine is super great, but they do have height and they have a good little outside shooter, and when you give them that many extra opportunities, it really hurts."

Freeman led the Cowgirls in scoring with 11 points, while Josie Kasberger added five, Barker four, Hutchins three, and McKinzee Mode two.

Emily Aarness knocked down four three-point shots and led all scorers with 14 points. Fellow guard Cortney Wolf was also in double figures for the Hawks with 10, while La Pine post Haily Hinkle added nine points.

Hinkle led all players in rebounds with 10, while Barker and Kasberger each had six boards for the Cowgirls.

With the win, the Class 3A Hawks improved to 3-3 on the year, while the Cowgirls dropped to 0-4.

The Cowgirls do not play again until Thursday, Dec. 20, when they take on Seaside (3-2) in the opening round of the Seaside Invitational. Game time is scheduled for 7 p.m.

"We have to go to Seaside next weekend and open up with Seaside," Lea said. "We have to get ready to play aggressive and improve, and hopefully, we can get a win with somebody there."

La Pine 44, Crook County 25

Tuesday, December 11

At Crook County

La Pine 14 13 6 11 — 44

Crook County 10 5 3 7 — 25

La Pine — Emily Aarness 14, Wolf 10, H. Hinkle 9, Westbrook 6, Cummings 2, K. Hinkle 2, Osborne 1, Smith, Gerard, B. Harrison, T. Harrison. Totals: 15 9-22 44.

Crook County — Teagan Freeman 11, Kasberger 5, Barker 4, Hutchins 3, Mode 2, Ptomey, Rash, Bales, Rash, McCellan. Totals: 6 10-16 25.

Three-point goals — La Pine: Aarness 4, Wolf. Crook County: Freeman 3.

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