NWC Women Go To Wire With Casper, Sheridan
‘We’ll Learn From it,’ Says Levett
In the books, they go down as losses. But there’s more: Trapper women’s basketball coach Cam Levett saw a lot of positives from a pair of close defeats to Casper College and Sheridan College Friday and Saturday in a Thanksgiving weekend tournament at Sheridan.
The Casper College women, ranked No. 18 in the nation and defending Region IX North champions from a year ago, squeezed past Northwest 59-56 Friday afternoon; Sheridan outlasted the Lady Trappers 66-64 in overtime Saturday. Northwest will see each of the teams twice more this season in conference play.
“We took it tough, but we’ll learn from it,” said Levett. “We played hard. We’ve got to find a way to win.”
There’s hardly time to dwell on the close losses. The Trapper women (4-6) were back on the road Monday to play the Rocky Mountain College JV in Billings. They’ll host Miles Community College and Dawson Community College this Friday and Saturday in Powell.
CASPER COLLEGE 59 LADY TRAPPERS 56
Against Casper College Friday, the Trapper women fell behind by seven points at halftime, but refused to go away.
“Casper’s a real physical team and they play hard,” Levett said. “Our girls played really well. It was a two-point game late.”
He was pleased that Northwest showed toughness of its own on the boards, outrebounding Casper 42-35. Sophomore Lily Henry of Morgan, Utah, grabbed seven rebounds for the Lady Trappers.
Adela Smutna, from the Czech Republic, had a mammoth game on offense for Northwest.
She scored 24 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field, including three of four from beyond the arc. Smutna connected on five of six free throws.
“She was fantastic,” Levett said of the 6-foot freshman. Samiyah Worrell of Fountain, Colorado, chipped in 13 points as the Trapper women shot 34 percent from the field and 73 percent from the free throw line.
“I feel real good about how hard we played,” Levett said.
SHERIDAN COLLEGE 66 LADY TRAPPERS 64 (OT)
The Saturday contest with host Sheridan was a classic back and forth battle after the Lady Trappers overcame a slow start.
“We didn’t play our best ball early,” Levett acknowledged. “But give credit to Sheridan. They wanted to slow us down. They had a good game plan for us and picked us up all over the court.”
The Lady Trappers shook off the rough start and came back to lead at the half. The two teams locked in a battle that saw 14 lead changes.
With NWC down by three points and time running out, Smutna fired a 3-point shot that bounced around and around the rim before falling through to send the game into overtime at 53-53.
Sheridan used free throws in the overtime period to their advantage in the 66-64 win. Sheridan converted 85 percent from the foul line in the game (29 of 34).
“In an overtime game, that’s huge,” Levett noted.
The Northwest women hit 73 percent of their free throws for the second game in a row. NWC was successful on 30 percent of its field goal tries.
Worrell led Lady Trapper scoring with 20 points, and Smutna finished with 13. Worrell and Smutna each added three assists. Sheridan won the battle of the boards, 50-42. Lily Henry had eight rebounds for another stellar showing for NWC.