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Crook County is unable to hold early lead in 54-37 road loss to The Dalles Riverhawks

LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Teagan Freeman goes up for a shot in a game earlier this year. Freeman led both teams in scoring on Thursday night with 16. Freeman hit four three-point shots in the game. Despite her 16 points, the Cowgirls still lost the game 54-37. The Crook County Cowgirls were on fire early in their league playoff game at The Dalles Thursday night.

However, Crook County could not maintain their momentum as the Cowgirls eventually lost 54-37 to the Riverhawks in the first round of the Intermountain Conference Girls Basketball Tournament.

"We came out of the locker room ready to play," Crook County head coach Heidi Lea said following the game. "It's too bad it couldn't have been just a one quarter game. We did awesome in the first quarter."

The Cowgirls rolled out to a 17-11 lead at the end of the first period, but they were unable to maintain the momentum in the second quarter as The Dalles shifted their offense into high gear.

With forward Josie Kasberger sitting on the bench with three fouls, The Dalles took advantage on the offensive glass, pounding the boards and picking up easy second-chance baskets as the Riverhawks outscored the Cowgirls 22-4 in the period.

The big second quarter gave the Riverhawks a 33-21 lead.

"We would turn to get a rebound, and we didn't box out," Lea said. "We let them have a lot of offensive rebounds, and they had a lot of easy buckets that cost us in the second quarter. That just killed us."

The two teams traded baskets in the third quarter, as The Dalles led 40-28 heading into the final stanza.

The two teams continued to trade baskets for much of the fourth period before The Dalles went on a late run to make the final score 54-37.

Although she was disappointed with the loss, Lea was still pleased with the improvement she saw from the first meeting between the two teams.

"The first time we played them, we were lucky to score in the first quarter," she said. "It was, 'Shoot, we are going to be scoreless.' This time, we started out ready to play and went after it. We just ran into a little wall in the second quarter, but the first time that we played them, we lost by 36, so this is a huge improvement."

Teagan Freeman led all scorers with 16 points for the Cowgirls, while Liz Barker added seven points and 15 rebounds.

Meanwhile, the Riverhawks had balanced scoring with Kilee Hoylman, Jenna Miller and Lauryn Belanger each scoring 13.

With the loss, the Cowgirls fell to 3-17 on the season, while The Dalles improved to 11-8.

The Dalles lost to Redmond 55-45 Saturday night in the Intermountain Conference tournament semifinals.

Meanwhile, the Cowgirls fell into the loser's bracket where they were scheduled to play at Ridgeview on Monday.

With heavy snow blanketing Central Oregon, all games were canceled for today.

The game could be rescheduled for Tuesday. However, with the OSAA cutoff date set for Tuesday night, even if that game is played, there will be no way to finish the conference tournament unless the OSAA moves the cutoff date to later in the week.

Although that is unlikely, it could happen as several other leagues are also struggling to finish out their league season.

Should the tournament continue, the Cowgirls would have to defeat Ridgeview on Tuesday, then beat the winner of Hood River and The Dalles on the road Wednesday night in order to have any hope of qualifying for post-season play.

In the meantime, with schools canceled on Monday throughout the league, the team will just have to sit and wait to see whether or not their season has ended.

The Dalles 54, Crook County 37

Thursday, February 21

At The Dalles

Crook County 17 4 7 9 — 37

The Dalles 11 22 7 14 — 54

Crook County – Teagan Freeman 16, Barker 8, Hutchins 4, Kasberger 4, Ptomey 4, McClellan 1, Woodward, Mode, Ramoss, Brooks, Papke. Totals: 15 3-11 37.

The Dalles – Kilee Hoylman 13, Jenna Miller 13, Lauryn Belanger 13, R. Codding 7, E. Codding 4, Decker 3, Snyder 1, McConville, Guzman, Schatz. Totals: 21 11-21 54.

Three-point goals – Crook County: Freeman 4. The Dalles: Miller.

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