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Lady Hornets have rough outing at the Winter Classic

The Pine Bluffs Lady Hornets varsity basketball team competed in the Burns Insurance Winter Classic held December 8-10. There were several teams competing in the classic including the Wheatland Bulldogs, Douglas Bearcats, Newcastle Dogies, Torrington Trailblazers and the Pine Bluffs Hornets. Each team played four games over a three-day span. There are no tournament winners or trophies just some good competition to get the athletes ready for the season. The Lady Hornets had a rough outing as they lost all four games.

First up were the Wheatland Bulldogs. Since this would be the first game of the season there are no records to report. In a pre-game interview with Coach Lindsey Forbes she said, "We have a tough schedule between now and Christmas. I just want the girls to compete. I think they may struggle a bit". In the first quarter the Hornets got the tip off and Jessica Hoffman took it down to get the first points of the game. Hoffman then hustled down the court and blocked a Bulldog shot. Reese Graves got down and inside the Bulldogs defense and hit the lay-up for a couple. Abby Gray got fouled and dropped two free throws. Gray got a good pass from Kelsie Bymer and got the easy lay-up. The Hornets were doing ok but the Bulldogs were staying right with them. The first quarter ended close with the Hornets trailing by one, 10-11. The second quarter started with the Bulldogs turning over the ball with a traveling call and the Hornets made them pay with an inbound pass to Gray who took it in for the lay-up and got fouled. She hit the extra point. Jessica Hoffman got fouled while shooting and hit one of two at the free throw line. But the Hornets defense did not stop the Bulldogs offense, as they were able to roll off 15 points to the Hornets nine. The Hornets headed into the locker room trailing the Bulldogs 19-26.

The third quarter started off the same as the first half ended. Abby Gray got the inbound pass and drove down the court for a lay-up but is fouled. She hit one of the free throws. Jessica Hoffman got the pass from Kelsie Bymer under the net and hit the easy lay-up. Hoffman got the ball again under the net and put it up for two. Hoffman was strong under the net. She was able to pull down Grays shot and put it back up for the score. The Lady Hornets were hustling up and down the court but were unable to slow the Bulldogs down as they put up 14 more points. The Hornets were only able to score eight more. The third quarter ended with the Hornets down 13 points 27-40. The Hornets came out in the fourth quarter hard. However the Bulldogs started to hit their 3-point shots and early in the quarter led 27-50. The Bulldogs found the hole in the Hornets offense and exploited it. The Bulldogs were running behind the Hornets defense for easy shots. The Bulldogs kept back court pressure on the Hornets forcing some errors. Abby Werner finally got through and hit a lay-up. The Hornets lost the game 30-60.

Leading scorer for the game was Jessica Hoffman with 13 points. Abby Gray was next with 8 points. Kelsie Bymer, Hattie Lerwick, Reese Graves and Avery Sweeter each added two points. Kaylea Bymer added the final point.

Coach Forbes had this to say about the game. "They competed. The score may not show it but they were there all the time. At times I had four freshmen on the court. We didn't do well one on one but they competed. They did well."

The second team the Lady Hornets faced was the Douglas Bearcats. This was a game that we bet the Hornets could have back. The Bearcats were fast, accurate and dominant on the court. Try as they might the

Hornets lost the contest to the Bearcats 8-61. In the first quarter Jessica Hoffman was able to hit a pair of free throws and Abby Gray added another one for three points. That was all the Bearcats allowed the Hornets in the first quarter. The Bearcats shut out the Hornets and they went into the half with a 3-41 score.

The second half was just as rough as the first for the Hornets. The Hornets were able to score first in the third quarter hitting a jumper from outside the key. Hattie Lerwick was able to sink a three-pointer in the fourth quarter to give the Hornets eight points. The Bearcats won the contest 8-61.

The Hornets next took on the Newcastle Dogies. The Hornets were going to come back from the last game to put points up on the board. However the Dogies had a game plan of their own and letting them win was not it. The Dogies went on a 0-10 run in the beginning. The Hornets were shooting but they could not get the ball through the hoop. The first quarter ended with a -2-16 deficit. The second quarter was a bit better as the Hornets were able to put up 8 points to the Dogies 15. Kailen Martinez hit a three-point jumper at the buzzer to give the Hornets 10 points. Halftime score is 10-31. The third quarter was the Hornets best in points. Avery Sweeter was able to score from under the net. Jessica Hoffman got the inbound pass and scored from outside the key. Hoffman hit another fade away jumper for two more. Hoffman drove towards the bucket and drew the foul. She hit one of the two free throws. Abby Werner and Hoffman were strong on the boards. The third quarter ended with a score of 21-47. The fourth quarter went pretty well for the Hornets. They were able to put up 10 points to the Dogies 13. Gray drove in and drew the foul. She hit one of her free throws. Hattie Lerwick hit three from the right side but it was not enough to over take the Dogies. The Hornets fell 31-60 to the Dogies.

Last up for the Lady Hornets were the Torrington Trailblazers. The Trailblazer came out with some heavy back court pressure on the Hornets. The never let the Hornets get on track. The Trailblazers got an early 2-7 lead and never looked back. For the first six minutes the Hornets were unable to score. With two minutes left Abby Gray finally hit for two. The Hornets were finally starting to move the ball and the first quarter ended with a score of 7-18. The second quarter was more like a football game, many of the players hitting the floor and getting up. Avery Sweeter got fouled and nailed one of her free throws. The half ended with the Trailblazers in the lead 13-38. The second half started with the Hornets starting to find a way through the backcourt pressure. Hoffman was able to weave around the Trailblazers defense and get under the net and score two. With the pass from Gray Kaylea Bymer was able to drive to the net and draw the foul. Hoffman was able to get under the net again and hit another bucket. The third quart came to an end with a score of 25-55. The Hornets were able to put 12 points up with Hoffman able to get under the net and score. Kelsie Bymer was able to nail a three-pointer and Gray kept pushing and drawing the fouls. With all their effort the Lady Hornets were unable to overcome the Trailblazers and lost 37-68.

It was a rough outing for the Lady Hornets and they still have some very tough competition coming up before Christmas. Good Luck.


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