By Sean Pearson
If you weren’t physically present at the Lady Mariners’ home game against Seward on Friday, you might think the low-scoring, defensive battle would be slow and tedious to watch.
You would be wrong.
Homer’s only lead, 10-9, came in what would be the highest-scoring quarter of the game. Neither team warmed up much more in the second quarter, knotting the game at 14 at the half.
Neither team’s shooting got any hotter in the second half. The Lady M’s held the Seahawks scoreless in the third quarter, but only picked up two points of their own. A Seahawk 7-1 fourth-quarter run locked up the 21-17 win for Seward.
Homer’s Tayla Cabana scored 10 of the team’s 17 total points.
“That was a tough game, and it’s too bad we couldn’t come out with a win,” said senior guard Maggie Koplin.” The toughest part of Seward’s team was their physicality and defense; it was hard to get around them.”
Despite the loss, Koplin said she thought the M’s played well overall.
“Our defense was awesome, and our teamwork was really good,” she explained. “I think we should have switched up our offense in the second half, and run different plays against their defense. But now we know we can play with them, and I think it will be a different story next time.”
Part of the problem for Homer seems to be an ongoing curse at the basket. Despite taking a number of relatively high-percentage shots, most of the Lady M’s shots clanged fruitlessly against the rim, or careened off the backboard.
“We do have some problems with that, but honestly, all you can do is keep shooting,” Koplin said. “The ball isn’t gonna go in unless you don’t give up and stay persistent. We have some very talented shooters, but I think we just need more practice shooting with pressure on us — and at game speed.”
The Lady Mariners join the boys team at the Whaler Invitational Basketball Tournament in Barrow over the weekend. They return next weekend to host the Homer Winter Carnival Tournament.
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