Currently Seated No. 2 In Region IX
The Northwest College women’s basketball team beat Miles Community College on Wednesday, Feb. 14 and lost to Casper College on Saturday, giving the Lady Trappers a 9-3 Region IX record and 21-7 overall record.
LADY TRAPPERS 61, MILES COMMUNITY COLLEGE 55
“It was kind of an ugly first half,” said head coach Janis Beal of last week’s game against Miles Community College. “I felt like our girls were letting Miles dictate the style of game and the play and just kind of everything about the game.”
Miles Community College led 16-10 after the first quarter and increased the lead to 32-22 at halftime.
“Then in the second half our girls did a much better job of being in control — then we played our game,” Beal said. NWC cut into the 10-point lead pretty quickly and “and then it was kind of back and forth,” she said.
The Lady Trappers held the Lady Pioneers to just nine points in the third quarter while scoring 18 themselves to trail by only one point going into the final quarter of play, 41-40.
In the fourth quarter, NWC once again outscored Miles Community College 21-14 to come away with a 61-55 win.
“We didn’t do a good job with free throws for most of the game but late in the game we shot well,” Beal said. “We knocked them down when we needed to.”
At the 3-point line, Northwest College shot 41.3 percent and finished at 37.7 percent from the field. The Lady Trappers sank 63.6 percent of their free throws — including making 81.8 percent in the fourth quarter.
Three players scored in double digits, led by Kira Marlow with 18, Tala Aumua-Tuisavura with 12 and Tayla Sayer with 10.
Marlow led the team in steals with four and Aumua-Tuisavura and Sayer both led the team in assists with three each.
Dani McManamen had seven boards — five on defense and two on offense — and Julynne Silva had six rebounds.
“The main part of that game was being able to dictate the tempo and style and that was definitely what we did in the second half,” said Beal.
CASPER COLLEGE 63, NORTHWEST COLLEGE 56
Saturday was Sophomore Day for the Lady Trappers, but what began as a day to honor the nine players who will be moving on after the season turned bittersweet by game’s end.
“Casper is a very good team,” Beal said of Saturday’s game. “There’s a reason they’re undefeated in region play and 15th in the nation.”
With the 63-56 win over the Lady Trappers, the Lady TBirds are 12-0 in Region IX — sitting in first place — and have an overall record of 26-2.
“But I feel like we’re right there,” Beal said of the game.
After the first quarter, the Lady Trappers led 16-12. They then trailed 32-31 at halftime and 48-44 going into the fourth quarter.
“Turnovers I felt like really hurt us,” said Beal. At one point in the second half, the Lady Trappers had four turnovers in a row, she said.
“You can’t have blank possessions late in the game against a good team,” Beal said. “I think those really hurt us.”
For the game, the Lady Trappers had 25 turnovers to the Lady T-Birds 20. Casper College’s offensive rebounding also was a factor in the loss.
“We can’t give them those extra opportunities,” said Beal. “We would do a really good job defensively and then give up on offensive rebounds that leads to a quick basket for them [Casper].”
The Lady T-Birds had 13 offensive rebounds while the Lady Trappers had only six.
Casper College had 30 boards overall — below its average of 43.7 per game — while Northwest College had 24 rebounds, below its season average of 41.7.
The Lady Trappers shot 46.7 percent from the field, 25 percent at the arc and 73.3 percent from the free throw line.
The Lady T-Birds shot 38.6 percent from the field, 33.3 percent at the 3-point line and a 63.6 percent from the charity stripe.
“They’re just solid at every position,” Beal said, adding, “but we’ve got to do a better job of valuing every single possession.”
Beal went on to say the Lady Trappers had more trouble on the offensive side of the game, as the NWC defense held the Lady T-Birds well below their average of 80.3 points per game.
“It’s not the defensive side that really struggled, necessarily,” said Beal, “but offensively, when we only score 56, we didn’t do a good job, either.”
The Lady Trappers have been averaging 79.1 points per game.
Beal said her squad “didn’t attack as much as we could have,” which resulted in getting to the free throw line only 15 times compared to 22 by Casper College.
Dallas Petties led the team with 19 points. Also scoring in double digits was Aumua-Tuisavura with 10.
Marlow led on the boards with six, all defensive, and Aumua-Tuisavura had five rebounds.
Aumua-Tuisavura had three steals.
This is the final week of the regular season — with a game at Gillette College Wednesday evening and at Sheridan College on Saturday at 3 p.m.
“We need to get these last two in order to remain in second,” Beal said heading into the contests. “So these next two are big for seeding purposes.”
Currently the Lady Trappers are in the No. 2 spot in Region IX.
“Anytime you go on the road in Region IX it’s a tough game,” Beal said, adding that both Gillette and Sheridan are tough places to play.
If the Lady Trappers beat both Gillette and Sheridan, they will host the Region IX play-in game on Friday, March 2.