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JV Lady Hornets looking strong

The Pine Bluffs basketball program saw its first set of games this weekend in the Burns Insurance Winter Classis Round Robin. This is not a tournament and no trophy will be awarded but it is a good time to get the game back into the athletes. The Winter Classic had the Wheatland Bulldogs, Douglas Bearcats, Newcastle Dogies, Torrington Trailblazers and the Pine Bluffs Hornets. Each team played four games over a three-day span. The Lady JV Hornets ended the Winter Classic with a 2-2 record.

The JV Lady Hornets first opponents would be the Wheatland Bulldogs. The Lady Hornets got off to a rocky start as they let the Bulldogs score eight points before #44 Abby Werner was able to score the Hornets first points. The Hornets were pushing but the Bulldogs would exploit the holes that the Hornets had in their defense. The first quarter ended with the Bulldogs leading 4-21. The second quarter did not go any better for the Hornets. MaKenna Thurin intercepted a pass from the Bulldogs and went coast to coast for an easy lay-up. Passing by the Hornets was not as accurate and it needed to be and the Bulldogs would intercept a few. Reese Graves was able to get a break away and take the ball all the way for two points. The Hornets were running hard the entire game but just never seemed to find the pace. The half ended with the Hornets down 8-32.

The second half of the game was not any better for the Hornets. Jessica Hoffman was able to hit a couple of shots and bring down a couple of rebounds. Abby Werner hit a couple of jumpers and forced a couple of turnovers. But in the end the Hornets lost their first game 18-47.

Game two for the Lady Hornets JV squad would be the Douglas Bearcats. The first half for the Hornets was a bit rough. The Hornets fell behind the Bearcats 16-30. Abby Werner kept driving and drawing fouls. She was at the free throw line four times in the last two minutes. Kailen Martinez was also fouled and with 1.1 seconds left the Hornets pulled within nine points of the Bulldogs. One of the Bulldog shooters hit a basket from the half court line right at the buzzer to end the half 24-36.

The Hornets come out of the locker room anxious and ready to play. Abby Werner bulled her way through the Bearcat defense for the lay-up and Reese Graves hit a shot from under the bucket for another two. The Hornets were still having problems dribbling and passing the ball though. But still the Hornet kept on pressing. Abby Werner was working hard under the net bringing down offensive and defensive rebounds and scoring points. However with all their efforts the Bulldogs were able to outscore the Hornets 30-52 in the third quarter. The fourth quarter for the Hornets was not much better as they were only able to score 6 points. MaKenna Thurin was able to drop a three halfway through the quarter and hit one for two after being fouled. The JV team was forced to finish the game with only three players on the court due to an injury. Kailen Martinez was quick all around the court and Thurin was great at ball handling. The Lady JV Hornets lost to the Bearcats 36-69.

Next up for the Lady Hornets would be the Newcastle Dogies. The Hornets started off slowly missing shots but being strong on defense. Abby Werner would be tough on defense bringing down rebounds. Avery Sweeter would block inbound passes for the Dogies and bring down both offense and defense rebounds. Werner nailed the first points of the game at the five-minute mark. The Hornets were able to shut down the Dogies and end the quarter with a 11-0 score. The second quarter was a bit more even as the Hornets were able to score 8 points while the Dogies put up 10. Kaylea Bymer was able to drive through the Dogie defense and hit the lay-up for two points. Kailen Martinez was able to sneak around the backside of the defense for another two points. The Hornets went into the half with a 19-10 lead. The second half went pretty much as the Hornets wanted. Number 12 hitting three-pointers and Abby Werner being aggressive on the boards. MaKenna Thurin would hit a jump shot and draw a foul for another point. The Lady JV Hornets won the battle 33-26.

Last up for the Lady Hornets would be the Torrington Trailblazers. This would be the girl's fourth game in three days. Coach Forbes had her hands full keeping the girls in the spirit to win. But that is exactly what they did. The first half was close. Jessica Hoffman would hit from under the net and then use her jumping ability to intercept shots and block inbound passes. She would steal the inbound pass and then go up for the score. The first half ended with the Hornets leading the Trailblazers 22-17.

The Hornets slowed a bit as the Trailblazers were able to catch up and tie the game at 28 with 1.50 seconds to go. The Hornets were not having much success with their shots as most of them would just jump out of the rim. Kailen Martinez was running hard at both ends of the court and Hoffman was asserting herself under the net pulling down rebounds. The third quarter ended with the Hornets trailing the Trailblazers 28-30. But the Hornets were not finished yet. MaKenna Thurin nailed a jumper from outside the key and Reese Graves drove for the net for a quick two points. Number 12 drove hard for the net and hit the lay-up. Thurin took an inbound pass and put it up for another two points. The defense was working hard keeping the Trailblazers in check but it was touch and go. The Trailblazers were finding the cracks and running in for quick lay-ups and hitting some outside shots. It was a close game but the Hornets hung on to win the day and beat the Trailblazers in a very close game 45-43.

The JV team looked strong and ready for the season. Good luck Hornets.


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