Loveland Reporter-Herald

Broncos buck Cougars

Shorthande­d Resurrecti­on Christian falls to Platte Valley

- By Nathan Wright nwright@ prairiemou­

The last couple of weeks haven’t been kind to the Resurrecti­on Christian girls basketball team.

Against Eaton on Jan. 27, starting post Lysette Baatz broke her nose. She just had surgery and will miss the rest of the season. Then last Thursday

against University, starting point guard Olivia Klein injured her finger.

The injury appears to be ligament damage and she will need at least a couple of weeks before she is able to participat­e. By then, the Cougars’ season could be over unless they make a deep playoff run.

The remaining members of the team don’t want to exit the playoffs early. They want to stretch their season as far as they can. To do that, they are going to have to regroup.

“We definitely have some injuries going on right now,” RCS head coach Jason Conrad said. “But we can’t have excuses. Nobody is going to feel sorry for us. Two of our starters are out and we have to be able to, and we can, we are a talented enough basketball team, use this moment as a moment to mature, get better, show some grit and some toughness.”

Playing without both injured starters for the first time Tuesday night, the Class 4A No. 7 Cougars couldn’t keep up with

Class 3A Platte Valley and lost, 53-28 at RCHS.

With players in new positions because of the injuries and a shorter bench, the Cougars were only behind by seven at halftime, but the Broncos outscored them 27-11 in the second half.

“It’s definitely difficult because we all have to shift positions and try some things we haven’t ever done before,” sophomore wing Callie Gillespie said. “But we decided to go to the mindset of, we’re going to get back at it. We’re going to work hard these next couple of

practices and just come back out 10 times stronger.”

Gillespie played point guard for a good portion of the game and finished with six points.

After Platte Valley closed out the first quarter with a 7-2 run to take a 14-7 lead, the Cougars kept the game that close in the second quarter. They cut the Broncos’ lead to 14-9 early in the second period before Platte Valley went on a 10-0 run to take a 24-9 lead.

RCS answered with an 8-2 run to close the first half and trailed 26-17 at the break.

“In the first quarter, we came out and I think there were definitely some nerves there,” Conrad said. “We got a little unorganize­d in their press attack. But once we got unorganize­d, we won the second quarter. I thought we looked really good when we were organized, running our offense, attacking the basket, running our press break.”

Platte Valley pressed the Cougars the entire game, forcing turnovers and, especially in the second half, turning them into fastbreak points.

The Broncos outscored the Cougars 27-11 in the second half with the bulk of their points coming from Andi Schissler and Bree Bunting, who combined to score more than 40 points.

“It was mindset and we started to pick at each other a little bit, something we usually don’t do,” Gillespie said. “It pulled us apart a little, which doesn’t normally happen for this team.”

Mackenzie Flikkema led the Cougars with 14 points. Without Klein, the team’s second-leading scorer, RCS was held to a season-low point total.

Now the focus is on getting organized as the team has four 4A Patriot League games remaining beginning at Sterling on Thursday and a home game against Berthoud on Saturday before closing the regular season next week at home against Valley and on the road at Eaton.

“We all love each other,” Gillespie said. “We have that bond and I think we can do that.”

 ?? NATHAN WRIGHT — LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD ?? Resurrecti­on Christian’s Milana Rowe passes to a teammate during the Cougars’ game against Platte Valley on Tuesday at RCHS.
NATHAN WRIGHT — LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD Resurrecti­on Christian’s Milana Rowe passes to a teammate during the Cougars’ game against Platte Valley on Tuesday at RCHS.

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