Lady Plainsmen Place Fourth at Regional Basketball Tournament
After their key win on Thursday, the Laramie Lady Plainsmen lost their last two games and finished in fourth at the 4A East Regional Championships in Gillette.
Laramie lost its semifinal to second-seeded and second-ranked Cheyenne East, 75-38, on Friday night. That was followed by a 50-41 loss to Cheyenne Central on Saturday in the third place game.
That means Laramie will be the fourth seed from the East Conference at the 4A State Basketball Tournament in Casper. They will match up with the top-seed from the West Conference, the Rock Springs Tigers.
Lady Plainsmen head coach Laura Pollard said their long-term goal was to make it to state, but now that’s been accomplished.
“I don’t know if it’s just that post-season, haven’t been there for four years, but they’ve gotta dig down and get a little more heart. I know they want to win, and they want it, but I think they’re just kind of at a stand-still of now what do I have to reach down and do.”
Laramie’s first round state tournament game is 6 p.m. Thursday at Casper College.
Last Friday, Cheyenne East blitzed Laramie early. They began the game with a 25-4 lead. The Lady Plainsmen rallied with an 11-1 run in the second quarter. That got Laramie within 28-18, but East finished the first half with a 10-0 run. LHS never made another push in the game.
Pollard said their goal was to be composed against East.
“That composure didn’t necessarily get us any lift to get our shots in, and yet, we had some good looks early on. I think in the first quarter, if we could’ve just got a couple more buckets it might have changed.”
Cheyenne East (18-3) shot 50 percent in the game. They also held a 44-30 rebounding edge over the Lady Plainsmen. Katie Loken led three Thunderbirds in double figures with 15 points.
Laramie (16-7) was held to just 18 percent from the field. Jennifer Aadland has 17 points and eight rebounds in the loss.
Regional Third Place Game
On Saturday, Central beat LHS for the first time this season. The Indians shot 52 percent for the game and 50 percent from deep.
The Lady Plainsmen started with a 6-0 lead, but Central quickly tied the game on a pair of three’s by Abby Fearneyhough. It was Fearneyhough, who made a running three from the top of the key at the halftime buzzer, which gave the Indians their first lead.
LHS fought back in front 27-26 early in the third quarter, but Central responded with a 9-0 run and took the lead for good. They led 38-34 at the end of the period. Laramie wasn’t able to rally, and the Indians pulled away for the nine-point win.
Pollard said they didn’t take it for granted.
“Central came out and executed and continued to execute no matter what happened with them. We continued to play, but not execute.”
Laramie (16-8) was held to just 36 percent shooting. They went 4-18, 22 percent, from deep in the game. Aadland had 14 points to lead LHS again.
Central (13-12) was led by Fearneyhough with a game-high 24 points. Sammy Geyer added 15 points.