The Saratoga Sun -

Champs in the end


Photo courtesy of Mary Martin

Cassidy Little tries to steal a ball from an Upton defender in their final game of the state tournament Saturday.

Despite losing their first match at the 1A state tournament last weekend, the Encampment Lady Tigers still went home with a trophy and the title of consolation champions.

Head coach Amy Clay said she was very proud of her team, noting that she will miss seniors, Alyssa Barkhurst and Cassidy Little, both of whom have scored over a thousand points in their high school careers. "The seniors really stood up when it counted the most," Clay said.

The tournament started Thursday with a tough 43-52 loss to Kaycee. "We turned the ball over too many times and the momentum swung as they knocked down some three point shots," Clay said. "They shot 16 more free throws than we did, and made 10 more."

Despite the loss, the Lady Tigers racked up the numbers in stats. Paige Powell took 9 rebounds, followed by Noelle Peterson and Little, who each gathered 5. Point leaders were Peterson with 10 and Little and Barkhurst each scoring 12.

"It tested our character and the girls fought hard to win the next two games and a trophy," Clay said.

From then on out, the Tigers swept the competition. The girls moved to the consolation bracket on Thursday where they first went up against the Lingle/Ft. Laramie Doggers, which Clay described as a close game throughout.

Encampment saw victory over the Doggers 36-31. Once again, Powell took 9 rebounds. Barkhurst scored 18 points for her team, followed by Little with 12.

"We stepped up defensively at the end and made some big stops," Clay said.

Saturday, the Lady Tigers sealed their final win of the season against the Upton Bobcats, 54-34. "The win against Upton was a great season-ending victory," Clay said. "We were behind by 10 in the first half and closed the gap to 1 at half time. We outscored them 35-14 in the second half."

Against Upton, the girls cleaned the glass with a total of 35 rebounds. Powell grabbed 10 rebounds, Peterson brought down 9 and Little took 7. Barkhurst led scoring with 24 points, followed by Little with 16.

Though valuable seniors are leaving, Clay looks forward to another successful season with the returning players. "We have a solid group of hard workers coming back next year," said Clay.


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