SHERIDAN — Sheridan College women’s basketball faced Western Nebraska Community College Tuesday and kept up with a team that has qualified for the national tournament in the previous four seasons.
The Lady Generals lost 85-74 but for three-and-a-half quarters they were competing right alongside WNCC, said head coach Ryan Davis.
The Lady Generals were down four after the first quarter and cut the WNCC lead to two at halftime. SC turned the ball over three times coming out of the break, falling behind by five points before going on a run at the end of the third quarter, having the lead for a bit before WNCC retook it 62-61 entering the final quarter.
WNCC used fast break points to build a lead and managed to build a 10 point lead with just less than five minutes left in the game. Key offensive rebounds helped out WNCC during the run providing them with second-chance points. Davis said he felt like this was the only time the Lady Generals were out-rebounded. SC ended with one more rebound than WNCC.
Davis said it was during the middle portion of the fourth quarter that WNCC took control of the game. Both teams liked to apply full-court pressure and some fatigue caught up with SC during that portion. For the rest of the game, SC did a good job moving up and down the court.
Davis said he was happy with the team’s performance and effort. The Lady Generals had a slow game on Saturday effort-wise but was able to do a complete 180 and compete with a powerhouse team in Region IX. WNCC has won three of the last four Region IX titles. One area the Lady Generals seek to improve is free throws. As the team, SC was 57% from the free-throw line. SC also had a below-average night from beyond the arc, making five of 18 3-point shots.
Davis said making free throws and hitting one more 3-pointer drastically changes the game and could possibly mean SC wins the next meeting between the teams on Dec. 3.
“The run, we will learn from. Free throws and all that will definitely get better,” Davis said. “I am so excited to move forward with this team because they showed so much fight.”
The Lady Generals faced a zone and man defense against WNCC. Davis said the Lady Generals did not identify the zone well at the end of the first half. WNCC had a chance to pull away when SC slowed down offensively against the zone but was unable. SC handled the zone much better the second half and executed the zone offense, forcing WNCC to switch back to man defense.
Davis said he took WNCC switching to the zone defense as a compliment to the Lady Generals offensive production. Generally, a team switches from man to zone because they are struggling to defend the offense they are facing.
WNCC was led by Tishara Morehouse who scored 31 points. Davis said she is just a good player and made some shots when the Lady Generals had a hand in her face. She also had a few uncontested layups that helped her extend the WNCC lead in the fourth quarter.
The Lady Generals did a good job defending her most of the game and did not leave her with many open shots. Morehouse made one 3-pointer on seven attempts. Davis accredited that percentage to the effort of the Lady Generals’ defense.
The Lady Generals were led in points by Maddison Miller with 21 followed by Alex Trosper with 18. Cynthia Green lead SC with six rebounds followed by Trosper with five and Shelby Tarter with five.
The Lady Generals are on the road next, facing Miles Community College Nov. 8.