High school girls basketball

No comeback against Del Oro for Lady T-wolves

Woodcreek falls to 1-1 in SFL play with loss in Loomis
By: Kurt Johnson, senior sports editor
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An early advantage in the paint for the Del Oro High School girls basketball team was too much for Woodcreek to overcome as the Lady Eagles handed Woodcreek its first league loss of the season 50-36 Friday night in Loomis. Senior center Courtney Nolen scored seven points at the front of the rim in the opening stanza as Del Oro built a 15-9 lead after one and then built up its margin with each succeeding period. The Timberwolves were solid on defense, pressing and trapping and creating opportunities, but they did not cash in on enough scoring chances to close the gap on a Del Oro team that appears to once again be at the top of its game. “We needed to prove that we could play with this team,” Woodcreek coach Ray Beck said, “and we did that. Defensively, we did everything we needed to do to be right in this game, but we just gave the ball away too much on offense.” “This Woodcreek team is much improved,” Del Oro coach Mike Takayama said. “They are very athletic and they battled for 32 minutes.” The Timberwolves received solid defensive effort across the board, with sophomore guard Joleen Chanco, senior point guard Casie Tingley, senior forward Chelsea Green and junior forward Jennifer Judge leading the way. Woodcreek’s pressure defense has had a tendency to wear down opposing teams, allowing for strong finishes to push the Timberwolves over the top. In this game, the energy did slow down the Lady Eagles, but the hard work to keep trying to battle back from behind also had a tiring effect on Woodcreek. “Our style is to get them tired,” Beck said. “I thought we did that tonight, but we seemed to wear down ourselves and just could not get the finishes we needed. We can’t expect to recover from a 12-point deficit against a team like this.” The Lady Eagles had their hands in a lot of passing lanes, creating a lot of turnovers that kept Woodcreek from establishing any constant offensive rhythm. “We have not had a lot of close games,” Takayama said. “This type of battle in our first league game is good for us.” Reserve forward Madeline Campbell scored 14 points to lead Del Oro (1-0 in the SFL, 12-0 overall), while Nolen scored 11 and added seven rebounds despite sitting out most of the second half with foul trouble. Most of Campbell’s best work came outside the 3-point arc. “Our perimeter game was good,” Takayama added, “but we were not as efficient as we have been.” Sophomore forward Belle Obert did not shoot much, but was on target when she did fire, as she and senior guard Katie Pulliam both scored seven points for the Lady Eagles. Senior guard Meghan Huckaby snared five of her six rebounds in the second quarter when Del Oro dominated the glass at both ends of the floor. Judge scored 13 points to lead the Timberwolves and junior guard Maya Cabiness had a solid night off the Woodcreek bench with nine points. Green led the way on the window with six rebounds. Tingley scored six points and handed out four assists and Chanco nabbed four steals for Woodcreek. Woodcreek (1-1, 12-3) is off until next Friday night when it hosts Oakmont while Del Oro (1-0, 12-0) visits Oakmont (0-2, 7-9) Wednesday night.