After grabbing a rebound, senior Brandy Riziki dribbles down the court with Buckingham's Sierra Valance trailing her. (Photo by Jacqueline Chao)

Missing two players, Cavs routed by Buckingham

Missing two tall players, the girls basketball team lost at home to Buckingham 56-18 on Jan. 25. Senior point guard Heidi Johnson led the Cavs with 15 points.

Sophomore centers Naomi Cohen and Anna Fluetsch were sick and unable to attend the game.

“It was a hard game because we were missing taller girls who are helpful under the basket,” Johnson said.

“We let the other team get a lot of rebounds and turnovers, which gave them lots of points. We also need to take more shots because we were giving up opportunities. We worked hard even though it was tough coming out of finals week.”

The Cavs also played Buckingham on Jan. 8 and lost 59-16 on the road.

The latest game started off with Buckingham (10-7 overall, 5-3 in league) taking an early lead with many layups and a few free throws.

Country Day (2-9 overall, 1-7 in league) tried catching up but managed to get only one basket by sophomore small forward Lindsay Burback.

With four minutes left in the first quarter, the Cavs trailed 12-2, and Johnson scored a 3-pointer from the side of the court. With only 41 seconds remaining, Burback missed two free throws. The Cavs were down 20-5 at the end of the first quarter.

At the quarter, coach Latonia Pitts encouraged the girls by shouting, “We can’t give up! We are playing a whole lot better than the first time we played them, so let’s keep trying.”

With five minutes left in the second quarter, the Cavs continued to miss shots and were losing 32-5.

Freshman guard Daisy Zhou said the team needed to be smarter with passes to make more baskets.

With only 20 seconds remaining in the half, Buckingham committed a foul, and Burback sank one of her free-throw attempts. At halftime, the Cavs were down 32-6 and had two fouls to Buckingham’s five.

During the 10-minute break at halftime, Pitts instructed the Cavs on how they could improve.

“We have to keep our eyes up!” Pitts said. “Every single player needs to look at the ball. I am really impressed by our passing skills, though. We were able to keep the ball out of Buckingham’s hands for a while.”

Early in the third quarter, Johnson scored a 3-pointer, but the Cavs had trouble rebounding, which gave Buckingham more points, Burback said.

With four minutes left in the third quarter, the Cavs were down 40-9, but Johnson made two more free throws. The Cavs trailed 46-11 after three quarters.

The fourth quarter began with lots of shots that the Cavs narrowly missed, with Johnson eventually scoring the first basket of the period for the team. Johnson said she had never missed so many 3-pointers.  

Pitts called a timeout to remind the team to keep pushing through and play its hardest.

“What’s the worst that’s going to happen?” Pitts said. “You’re going to miss. So what’s the big deal? Just go for it.”

Buckingham proceeded to foul the Cavs twice, allowing Johnson to rake in some points for the team.

The girls’ next game is on Saturday, Jan. 26, at 6 p.m. at Sacramento Adventist.

By Sanjana Anand

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