East Carbon girls barely lose league home opener to Dugway Mustangs
|East Carbon's Joyce Clark was one of the leading scorers in the last two games the Lady Vikings have played in the last week. |
East Carbon's Lady Viking team is a better team than their record indicates. With an 0-5 start, it hasn't exactly been a great season yet, but the flashes of a good team are there.
In the last week they have lost two games to two tough opponents. Last Wednesday they lost in a non-league game at home to Green River 65-30. The Lady Pirates are highly rated in the state and the fact that East Carbon was down one starter (Chelsey Timothy) who was injured in a game against Tabiona earlier in the week.
However, Timothy returned in time for the game against Dugway on Tuesday evening and the Lady Mustangs, one of the powers in Region 18, had all they could handle on their trip to the eastern side of the state.
The Green River game began well for the Lady Vikes as they took an 8-2 lead over the Green River girls at the end of the first quarter. A combination of good defense and poor shooting by the kids from Emery County made it a good quarter for East Carbon.
But the second quarter was a different tale. Behind projected all-state player Tawni Bigelow and teammate Ciji Vetere, the Lady Pirates came out hot in the second quarter and never looked back. They outscored East Carbon 23-5, taking a 25-13 lead into the locker room.
When the teams came back out on the floor, Green River took off immediately, but the East Carbon team played better defense and held the Lady Pirates to only 17 points while scoring 11 of their own.
In the final quarter, Bigelow went nuts, scoring most of her 25 total points in the game in that quarter, with her team put up 23 points once again.
East Carbon's leading scorers in the game were Misty Valdez and Joyce Clark, both with seven points each.
From the first three games, it appeared that East Carbon had a balanced scoring line, with no real star, but with many players contributing. What was really needed was a more balanced defense, and they got that on Tuesday night against the Lady Mustangs.
In this game the Lady Vikes proved they can play with almost anyone. Despite losing one of their key players from last year to graduation, Dugway, as always is very strong again this year.
In the first quarter East Carbon was able to carve out a 5-4 lead at the end of the first period. Then came the second period, which once again was the death bell for the Lady Vikes. Dugway outscored them by 9 in the period, 19-10, and despite a comeback in the second half the East Carbon girls couldn't make up the difference. They trailed at halftime, 24-13.
In the third quarter, the ECH grittiness came out and the team scatched and clawed their way to a 13-6 superiority in points in the quarter.
In the fourth period, the Lady Vikes had their chances to take back the lead, but just couldn't quite get over the hump. The quarter came out a wash with both teams scoring 8 points and Dugway riding home with the win.
Balanced scoring was once again the order of the day with Timothy and Clark each putting in eight points and other teammates contributing close to similar numbers.
Best of all the defense was better, which will prove over the long run to be the bearer of victories for this spunky team.
The Lady Vikes next test will come against Wendover tonight (Thursday). The Lady Wildcats are not the power they have been in the last few years, so it will be a good chance for the kids from East Carbon to score their first victory.