The Encampment School girls' basketball team had a weekend of mixed results against conference contenders Farson-Eden and Cokeville over the weekend.
Illnesses that raged through the lower Valley, as well as injury, took their tolls on the Lady Tigers, but did not stop the girls from holding a high-ranked competitor to within 2 points and beating another conference rival. With post season a month away, the Lady Tigers are on the prowl for more wins.
The girls' weekend began Friday against the #2 ranked Pronghorns of Farson-Eden. The Tigers, themselves ranked #3 in their conference, lost the tough battle by 2 points, with a final score of 56-54.
Clint Bromley, coach of the Encampment Lady Tigers, said the game against the Pronghorns was a game of runs, but unlike last week's game against Baggs, the South Valley Girls did not get in the last one.
The Pronghorns had a 9-point lead at the half, but Encampment rallied in the fourth period, bringing the score to within 2 points, but the girls could not manage the final burst.
"Hailey Barkhurst probably had her personal best game," Bromley said. Barkhurst hit 20 points in the game. Teammate Noelle Peterson also accounted for 17 points.
Powerhouse players Paige and McKenzie Powell saw their games stifled a bit over the weekend as they recovered from the spate of illnesses that have rocked South Valley schools recently. Teammate Riley Little was also out with an inside ankle sprain.
Saturday's game against Cokeville went to the Tigers with a score of 36-22. "It was a defensive battle," Bromley said. "You can tell from the score."
The girls worked hard Saturday to prevent Cokeville's shooters from scoring, and did an admirable job of shutting down the Panthers' scoring opportunities, even though they struggled to convert successful defense into strong offense, understandable with so many of the Tigers' players recovering from illness.
With one loss and one win over the weekend, the Lady Tigers record stands at 4-2 in the conference and 16-2 overall with just a month before the regular season ends. "We're in a strong conference," Bromley said. "We're probably not going to catch Farson-Eden now unless something goes really wrong there, and we could wind up in a three-way tie for second or third place."
"The big thing is to finish up strong in the games against Baggs and Saratoga," he said.
The Encampment Tigers will face off against the Little Snake River Rattlers at home 4 p.m. Feb. 10 before traveling to Cheyenne to face Cheyenne South Feb. 11. The team's final game before regionals will be against Saratoga, 5 p.m. Feb. 18, on Panther hardwood.