After the double whammy of losing 79-50 to Western Wyoming at home and 76-71 to Miles Community College in double overtime on the road last week, the Northwest women’s basketball team somewhat resembled post-tornado zombies.
It took a long time to dissect what hit them to knock their record back to 13-15.
Climbing back into the Miles game that began with 18.8 percent first-half shooting, the Lady Trappers improved their accuracy and rallied to carry the game through regulation and into two overtimes before succumbing to the hosts.
Dallas Petties (19 points), Dani McManamen (13) and Domenica Gomes (12) were Trapper double-figure scorers.
Northwest hung close enough with the 22-5 Mustangs for a half at Cabre Gym and were within 38-31. But the Western lead mushroomed immediately in the third quarter. The Western game got away fast after that, with Northwest falling behind 60-39 after three quarters. Things did not improve any in the fourth quarter either.
No one from the Trappers reached double figures, except for coach Janis Beal in terms of how many minutes she spent talking to her team postgame. The Lady Trappers were in the locker room for at least 45 minutes after the buzzer.
“I told them I need to do a better job of motivating them,” Beal said. “We gave up a couple of times in the second half.”
Petties was the top Northwest scorer with 9 points.
Being outscored, outshot, outrebounded and committing too many turnovers was bothersome, but slow game starts and court sluggishness were of paramount concern.
“We talked for a really long time,” McManamen said. “When we get going we have to be mentally tough. We have to trust each other.”
Just two regular-season games remained on the schedule, Wednesday night at home against Central Wyoming and Saturday at Sheridan, before the Region IX playoffs.
McManamen never would have imagined the Trappers would be two games under .500 at this point in the season.
“The talent level is so high on our team,” she said. “Sometimes we don’t have games where we all connect.”
(Lew Freedman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)