By Charlene Smith
Pine Bluffs Post staff 

State Bound: Hornets teams make state together after 22 year drought

 

Charlene Smith

Coach Lindsey Forbes and assistant coach Dale Gilbert flank the third place Lady Hornets after the 2A East Regional Tournament.

Pine Bluffs Hornets have a winning style. Game in and game out, win or lose, they focus on the task at hand and when complete refocus on the next task.

This methodology has worked well, bringing the Hornets and Lady Hornets to the highest level of competition: the state tournament in Casper numerous times in the past two decades.

But not since 1992 have both teams formatted a winning strategy together and made the final tournament. Dust off the purple and gold, fill the tanks with gas, because our home teams are attacking Casper.

Hornets

The Hornets are focused on breaking a drought. They have not made it past the quarterfinals since 1995, a mark that's just outside the state's top 10 worst list. But the past means nothing with the task at hand.

"This weekend we played well most of the time," Coach William Gray said. "We still have way too many turnovers. But, they are a resilient bunch of kids, and they fight every second they are on the floor."

Gray was impressed with the resilience Saturday as the Hornets had a difficult offensive battle with Tongue River in the morning and Burns to win third in the afternoon. Gray said the team was prepared for the quick turnaround by practicing every Wednesday morning.


"The regional tournament usually throws a curve-ball as far scheduling, so we want to prepare for those as much as we can," Gray said. "This week is what we play for all year."

In the first trip for Gray to the state tournament, the Hornets, No. 3 seed, will play Big Piney at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Casper College.

Sundance Game Stats

Kyle Steger perfect in the field 5/5 7/8 on the line scoring 17 with 6 rebounds

Scott Gross 6/9 in the field, 1/ 4 on the line scoring 13 with 10 rebounds

3/6 in the field, 6/7 on the line scoring 12 with 9 rebounds

Tongue River Game Stats

Thompson 9/13 in the field, perfect on the line 2/2 scoring 20 with 14 rebounds

Trent Werner 3/8 in the field all from beyond 3-point line, 4/5 on the line scoring 13 with 2 rebounds

Steger 3/8 in the field, 7/12 on the line scoring 13 with 12 rebounds

Burns Game Stats

Thompson 6/11 in the field with 2 3-pointers, 1/2 on the line scoring 19 with 8 rebounds

Werner 4/7 in the field with 3 3-pointers, 1/2 on the line scoring 12

Harvey De La Cruz 4/5 in the field with 1 3-pointers scoring 9 with 3 rebounds

Lady Hornets

Coach Lindsey Forbes was proud of the Lady Hornets after a long and challenging battle at the 2A East Regional Tournament in Cheyenne last week.

Forbes said the team needed to control and shut down the threat of Kasey O'Conner. They got into her head and kept her from being any substantial presence for scoring. Pine Bluffs struggled with their rebounds and had trouble from the paint but maintained a 10-point lead most of the game and won, 43-33.


"I'm just really proud of these girls," Forbes said. "They have worked so hard and I'm really happy for them. Last time we went to state was in 2012 and we placed fourth."

The No. 3 seed Lady Hornets will play Wyoming Indian Thursday at 9 a.m. at Casper College. This is Forbes first trip to the state games as a head coach.

Sundance Game Stats

Andrea Baker 6/14 in the field, 4/6 on the line scoring 19 with 4 rebounds

Jaydn Golding 3/4 in the field, 1/2 on the line scoring 8 with 6 rebounds

Sierra Shelit 2/4 in the field with 1 3-pointer scoring 5 with 2 rebounds

Southeast Game Stats

Sam Hanson 3/8 in the field, perfect on the line 4/4 scoring 10 with 1 rebound

Ashlyn Culp 3/6 in the field, perfect on the line 2/2 scoring 8 with 4 rebounds

Shelit 1/3 in the field, 3/4 on the line scoring 5 with 2 rebounds

Lusk Game Stats

Hanson 7/11 in the field, 4/6 on the line scoring 18 with 4 rebounds

Culp 5/9 in the field scoring 10 with 7 rebounds

Golding 3/10 in the field with 2 3-pointers, 1/2 on the line scoring 9 with 6 rebounds

Sundance Game Stats

Baker 3/14 in the field with 2 3-pointers, 5/7 on the line scoring 13 with 5 rebounds

Hanson 4/10 in the field, 1/4 on the line scoring 9 with 3 rebounds

Golding 2/8 in the field with 2 3-pointers, 1/2 on the line scoring 7 with 3 rebounds

Charlene Smith

Senior Hornet Marquice Rivers races Burns senior Cory Lemaster down the court in the third place game at the 2A East Regional tournament that Pine Bluffs won. Both teams advanced to the state tournament.

 

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