PERRYDALE - The Perrydale High School girls basketball team had its 13-game winning streak snapped on Jan. 28, losing 33-15 against the St. Paul Buckaroos.
From tipoff, the Pirates (17-3, 8-2 Casco League) came out with a shaky offense, trailing the Buckaroos (19-1, 10-0 Casco) 7-0 at the end of the first quarter, feeling pressure at the basket from their taller, undefeated opponent. With six points scored at halftime, another five in the third quarter and only four in the final stretch, this game marks the lowest-scored game for the Pirates since the season opened.
“We were just trying to play our game, the Perrydale way, and not play to what they do,” said senior Amity Deters.
That mindset can be hard to maintain in the thick of it.
“We’re scared,” said head coach Terry Newton after the game. “We can play with them, but we can’t come out making mistakes and turnovers the first thing. (The Pirates) are a good group of girls, a good group of athletes, but whenever they get in the big one, they get soft. And that’s what it comes down to. We have to learn to compete against the bigger teams. We are a really good team - we are top three. We have the ability to play St. Paul.”
While the Pirates struggled offensively, they maintained a defense that kept St. Paul from seeing the basket as often as they would have liked.
“The last time we played them, we held them to a pretty low score (35-25), and they did also, so it’s basically expected that we will have a really low score because the defense is so good,” said Deters.
Out of all the teams faced in league, St. Paul is the only team that consistently challenges the Pirates.
“That’s why we try to schedule games out of our league, for that type of competition,” said senior Sydney Lawrence. “And it helps to raise our ranking.”
A few more weeks remain in the season and then it’s on to districts, where the Pirates will have another shot at the No. 1-ranked team.
This week, the Pirates hosted Crosshill Christian on Tuesday after press time. On Thursday, the girls travel to Falls City at 5:30 p.m.