The H.J. Cody senior Laker girls basketball team had their first crack against the Notre Dame Cougars and came up short.
While the final score 62-48 suggests the Cougars controlled the game, it was indeed a competitive game only out of reach due to an initial hole the Lakers dug for themselves at the beginning of the first and third quarters.
Erin Bryenton felt the Lakers were a few shots away in these quarters.
“They got most of their shots in and it just wasn’t working for us,” she said. “We have to work harder and play better defense so they don’t get as many shots away.”
Laker Coach Matthew Kennedy agreed with Bryenton.
“I think we only made one shot the first quarter and that’s not like us,” he said. “We are a pretty good shooting team normally. We missed a practice the other day and we have some girls who are sick and injured so it just threw us off a bit.”
Despite the tough starts, the Lakers battled back hard – cutting the score to within seven points in the fourth quarter at one point.
“It gives us confidence to know we can play with them and hopefully come out with a win,” Byrenton said.
Kennedy sees the early jitters against Notre Dame as something that can be worked on.
“We had moments where we were dominating the game and we just need to find a way to do that more consistently,” he said. “We are going to work on not turning the basketball over as much. We are going to practice a new defensive system so we will see how that turns out.”
Bryenton added, “I think we were nervous because it’s a big school and we wanted to win. Next time.”
The Lakers will work on their new defensive schemes during their December 16 tournament and then rest for the holiday break. Kennedy encourages his squad to stay sharp but also rest – something an injury riddled squad needs.
“I want them to relax a bit,” she said. “They should go out and shoot the ball a little bit but also make sure to enjoy their break and have a good Christmas.”