• Kylie Willis puts in a shot during Saturday's game against Stamford.

Lady Buckaroos hold off Stamford rally for 40-39 victory

The Breckenridge High School Lady Buckaroos picked up their second victory of the season after edging Stamford 40-39.

Despite facing a team with more size at the post, the Lady Buckaroos’ stiff, man-to-man defense kept them in it early with turnovers at the top of the key that resulted in points on fast-breaks.

“Since we’re small, we figured out we had to get through them or get into them and get them to foul us,” Breckenridge senior guard Carly Tennison said. “We had to figure out a way for us little people to control the game ... This gives us our confidence.”

Although the Lady Bucks’ seniors have led them in scoring in previous games, Saturday the underclassmen showed showcased their skills. Freshman Kylie Willis led the Lady Buckaroos in scoring with 8 points, followed by senior point guard Aylin Saucedo’s 7-point performance. 

Tennison said bringing along younger players just three games into the season often requires leading by example. She kick started the Lady Buckaroos offense with a few fast-break lay-ups on steals, which may have motivated Hernandez and Willis, who ended the day with a combined 9 steals.

“We were getting the things we wanted and executing pretty well,” Breckenridge coach Chris Robertson said. “We just have to get over our nerves and get the young ones to get the ball in the hole.”

Robertson said his team shot the ball well in the first half, but could not pull away and instead relied on their defense to carry them through.

“We were 3 for 16 from the free-throw line,” Robertson said. “If you’re in a game and you’re 3 for 16, then you’re not finishing well. We could not pull away from them. They had a couple of athletes and one of the things I said before the season was we were going to struggle with size.”

The Lady Bucks and Lady Bulldogs matched each other point-for-point until a late free throw by Willis put the Bucks ahead for good. With the win, the Lady Buckaroos improved to 2-1 and will head on the road Saturday night for a 6 p.m. tilt against Lipan, a team that returns from a 2016-2017 season where fell in the regional round of the playoffs.

“I’m trying to make some adjustments to get some help on the boards,” Robertson said. “As far as our scoring goes, we have a low percentage scoring at close range. The first game we scored 48 points. At this level if you’re scoring 40 to 45 points a night, then you are doing a great job offensively. We just have to stick the ball in the hole and if we stick the ball in the hole these games would not even be close.”

Robertson added much of the offensive woes stem from being young and not used to the speed of high school varsity basketball.

“They are rushing themselves ... It’s just reps and we just have to  get reps and calm down,” Roberston said.

 

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