By Jeremy McDonald
SCIO, Ore.– It seemed fitting that in the last game before the Varsity-teams took to the court between Scio and Salem Academy that the Lady Loggers JV and Lady Crusaders JV ballers gave their fans some good-hearted, physical basketball.
It’s no doubt that Salem Academy’s JV squad lining up against Scio’s JV had the height with Chole Baker being the tallest player at six-foot along with sharp-shooting guard in Kayla Bauldree.
But, the Lady Loggers JV’ers weren’t going to shy away with their physicality that threw Salem Academy off their game as they held the Crusaders to seven first-half points and 16 entering the fourth quarter when Kristy Pollard cut the lead to 16-13 from making one-of-two from the line.
“This game was great because a lot of times when we play bigger teams like this, their varsity is really good,” said Kaitlyn Kuzma. “This game, we came out with our intensity and we were ready to go and I thought that was really nice and going into the locker room 7-7, I thought that was really great for our team especially.
“We’ve been doing different things in practice that we don’t normally do and I think that’s helping us a lot to improve.”
Kuzma and Mia Nordstrom helped set up the offense from the perimeter and played great defense on the perimeter as well as Pollard, Kyndal Porter, Grace Lowther all helped from the mid-range on in to the hoop in terms of rebounding in combating Baker, Bauldree, Athena Price and company.
Bauldree took a hard hit during the fourth quarter into the padded ‘Logger’ sign by the locker room side of the gym. After taking a few seconds, the sophomore was helped up as the intensity amplified during the final eight minutes as Salem Academy tried to find some sort of rhythm to build a comfortable lead.
“Eh it’s rough. I mean, you just got to learn to play with it, it’s part of the game, just got to play right through it.” starts Bauldree. “It was frustrating, our shots weren’t falling but we were able to match their physicality and it was a good match for us. We needed the competition for the season especially not a easy first half, it was nice good match.”
Eventually, those shots began to fall with Salem Academy converting Scio’s turnovers and fouls into points in the fourth quarter.
Baker pushed the lead to 17-13 before Price extended it further to 21-13 before the Scio defense slowed their offense down once more as the Lady Loggers Megan Griffith cut the lead to 22-15 in the closing minutes of the game.
“We didn’t want to lose that game, We didn’t want to lose,” smiled Bauldree. “I told the team at halftime that we had to come out not physically punch them in the throat but we got to give it to them, we got to step up our game because we weren’t playing ourselves in the first half.”
But the Scio JV, through all their hard-work in keeping the Lady Crusaders off the board, fell 25-15 as they couldn’t convert offensively after having success on defense throughout the game.
For the Lady Loggers, their success Friday afternoon was just things they were just doing trial-and-error as well as a few things that they’ve practiced during practice that helped them during the game.
“We kept trying different things we’ve never done before, our coach told us, ‘if you got something that’s going to work, why not go give it a try because we’re there so let’s go for it,” said Kuzma. “We had different girls screening and stuff and we just went for it. We just got to work on our smaller things like lazy passes.”
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Photos By Jeremy McDonald