The young, No. 6-ranked Camp Verde High School girls basketball team hung around with the veteran, No. 3-ranked Sedona Red Rock High School early on, then fell behind across the middle two quarters en route to a 62-36 Central Region loss on Tuesday, Jan. 9.
Experience proved invaluable, as the Scorpions [7-0, 3-0 Central] continued to attack the Cowboys [10-2, 3-1] with their full-court pressure, eventually imposing their fast-paced style of play and taking the game over.
“I chalk up tonight to youthfulness; playing four seniors and a sophomore against four sophomores and a freshman, and basically that’s what it was most of the night. The youthfulness, when things started getting away, instead of pushing through it and buckling down and taking care of some adjustments that needed to happen, those things didn’t take place,” Cowboys head coach Mark Showers said. “When I put people on the floor that needed to be able take care of certain things in certain areas, they weren’t really sure what to do. That’s the mark of a team that’s not a veteran team.”
Camp Verde, playing without junior guard Hope Ontiveros, trailed just 15-9 after the first quarter after sophomore guard Amanda Lozanilla hit a three-pointer. Lozanilla hit another to open the second too, cutting the deficit to 14-12.
But, the Cowboys did not have an answer for Scorpions senior guard Liza Westervelt, who scored a game-high 27 points, including 25 in the first half on six for six from beyond the arc and a perfect nine for nine in total.
Westervelt scored eight straight points to make it 22-12 and force a Cowboys timeout.
“I had a player like that once. When you have them, you love it, because when they’re in the zone, nobody can stop them,” Showers said. “She’s a tough player, and she played at the top of her game tonight, and unfortunately against us.”
Red Rock finished the half on a 13-6 scoring run to make it 35-20 at halftime; 12 of its points in the entire quarter came off of seven Camp Verde turnovers.
Seven more turnovers in the third quarter directly led to just five points, but also reduced the Cowboys’ chances at reducing the deficit. The Scorpions outscored them 20-6 in the frame, scoring 16 unanswered at one point, to lead 55-26.
“Youthfulness, they just struggled to overcome the adversity, and that’s actually a good thing because if every game we played was against Chino Valley or Bourgade [Catholic] they’d never learn those lessons,” Showers said. “Playing a team like this, especially as young as we are and as good as they are, it’s good for us, really good for us. It’s going to make them stronger and tougher in the future.”
A bright spot for the Cowboys was freshman forward Maya Hedges. Hedges scored 10 points and showed confidence, putting up 14 shots, while also collecting six rebounds, one assist, two steals and two blocks.
“Maya Hedges, I’m the most happy about Maya Hedges,” Showers said. “She competed hard tonight, competed hard, and not that the rest of the kids didn’t, but I thought as a freshman she just played hard. I don’t know if she realized she was a freshman or not, she got after it, and I thought she did a really nice job.”
Camp Verde beat Paradise Honors High School on the road 48-28 on Friday, Jan. 12. It played at home against Northland Preparatory Academy on Tuesday, Jan. 16, but results were unavailable at press time. Its next game is at
5:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 18, at Chino Valley High School.
Note: Region standings online were updated on Wednesday, Jan. 17, to include results after press time.
|Central Region Standings|
|School||Region Record||Overall Record|
Sedona Red Rock
Mingus Mountain Academy