By KEVIN THOMPSON
LAKIN — Going into the holiday break, Lakin and Holcomb were looking for some positives to take them through the layoff period.
Holcomb won, 59-32, but it was tough for both coaches to describe how much they gained from this game.
It was a game hampered by fouls (27 Holcomb, 22 Lakin), turnovers (40 total), and 52 free throw attempts.
That many whistles makes for a herky-jerky type of game, hard for any team to find a rhythm, let alone any kind of flow.
Fortunately for the Lady Longhorns, they found a way to skew that to their advantage.
Lakin hit its first shot of the game, then didn't score for seven more minutes with two seconds left in the quarter.
In the meantime, Holcomb went on a 13-0 scoring run and led 13-4 at the quarter break.
A new run of 9-0 continued in the second quarter that extended the score to 22-4. Lakin got back into the scoring groove by hitting nine free throws in that quarter, but they only hit 1-of-4 field goal attempts.
Turnovers plagued both teams (16 for Lakin, 10 for Holcomb), but Holcomb's shooting (13-of-27) kept them comfortably ahead 34-15 at intermission.
It was more of the same in the second half as Holcomb finished the game with 21-of-56 shooting, while Lakin finished just 7-of-38.
"It was hard to get into any continuity," Holcomb coach Kelley Snodgrass said. "That's why it was hard to get many of our shots to fall because it was just start-stop, start-stop. The girls were frustrated, but that's just how some games go."
Snodgrass told her team to take away some good things from a game like this. She said her team blocked out better, grabbing 26 boards. They held Lakin to just seven field goals. And they kept pressure on the Broncs most of evening.
Early foul trouble affected her team's effectiveness early on, she added, but that's to be expected with the style of play she asks from her girls. Aggressive play will lead to some fouls, but it keeps up the team's energy.
Despite the loss, Lakin coach Shawn Michaelis saw a number of positives from his team.
"Early on, I was impressed with how hard we were playing," he said. "We came out and got a 2-0 lead and played defense like we haven't played all year."
That early defense held the Longhorns to just five points for the longest time, he said. He liked his team's energy the entire game. They just didn't make the best decisions often enough.
After getting that 2-0 lead, Lakin didn't score on its next 14 possessions. They had an eight-possession drought later in the game.
"I guess if a team is that quick and shooting the ball that well, if you're not putting ball in the hole you're going to be in for a long night," Michaelis said. "It's hard to win a ballgame, let alone even be in the game."
Looking for consistency on the offensive end is one priority for the Broncs, Michaelis said. The break should be a good time for them to get that confidence. And it will be a good time for them to heal, as a number of varsity players are nursing numerous injuries.
Holcomb is now 4-2 entering the holiday break, a position Snodgrass likes right now.
"We had tough competition early but the girls responded from that. They've come back and fought every game. Now we have a tough one Tuesday in Liberal."
Lakin is off until after the holiday break.
Holcomb 13 21 16 9 -- 59
Lakin 4 10 8 10 -- 32
Holcomb (59) — Pfeifer 2 4-6 9, Prieto 2 2-2 7, Heydman 3 0-2 6, Mongeau 2 3-4 7, Deniston 3 0-0 6, Amos 7 2-2 16, Pena 2 0-0 4. Totals 24 13-18 59.
Lakin (32) — Williams 2 1-3 5, Hill 3 1-4 7, Davidson 0 1-4 1, Haney 0 2-4 2, Simmons 0 5-8 5, Rogers 1 3-7 3, Watkins 1 2-2 4, Armstrong 0 2-2 2, Richter 0 1-2 1. Totals 7 18-34 32.
3-point goals--Holcomb 3 (Pfeifer 1, Prieto 1, Amos 1), Lakin 0. Fouls--Holcomb 27, Lakin 22. Fouled out--Holcomb (Pena). Turnovers--Holcomb21, Lakin 23. Rebounds--Holcomb 26 (Heydman 5, Mongeau 5), Lakin 23 (Rogers 5).