Feb 26, 2012 - Craig Blumenshine, Staff WriterThe Riverton Lady Wolverines were quick out of the gate during Saturday's regular season basketball finale against the Evanston Lady Red Devils, but they couldn't sustain their energy later in the game.
Evanston defeated Riverton 45-28 in Wolverine Gym.
With the loss, Riverton ends conference play at 0-10 but can still qualify for the state tournament if they can win their first-round Class 4-A West regional tournament game Thursday.
Riverton will see Evanston (5-5 4-A West) again Thursday night as regional tournament play opens in Wolverine Gym.
"We talked going in. We intentionally withheld some things that we are going to try next wee,k but I thought the start we got was exactly what we needed. I hope we can sustain our effort, because we get out there and have our moments," head coach Ron Porter said.
It took just three seconds for Riverton to get on the board when Marcia Ashdown took the opening tip and gave RHS a quick lead with her layup from the left side.
After a Kyla Randall steal gave Hannah Svilar an easy basket, the Wolverines had a 12-4 lead -- their biggest lead of the season -- and seemed to be playing their best basketball
Evanston fought back to tie the game at 12-12, but the Lady Wolverines led 15-12 after the first quarter.
"They came out focused and we didn't. We came in arrogant, cocky, whatever you want to call it. I gave them a good butt-chewing," Lady Red Devil head coach Scott Ehlers said.
The stern talked worked.
McKenzie Kofoed's high-arching 3-point shot from the right corner tied the game at 15-15. Riverton's Amy Woodward countered with a bucket, but that was the last lead Riverton would have. By halftime, Evanston was in control 27-17.
Svilar scored eight, Woodward seven and Sheridan Smith six to lead Riverton, and Riverton out-rebounded Evanston 28-14.
"We rebounded well. I like the effort on the boards, but we need to finish. They shot over 50 percent, and any time a team shoots over 50 percent, you are going to struggle. We need to shorten the game, and they are a good opponent to do that against," Porter said.
Ehlers believes that although Casper Natrona will be the tournament favorite -- the Fillies have not lost a game this season -- there are other teams that can compete, especially Rock Springs and his own Lady Red Devils.
"Natrona is good, but I think we can play with them. I'm not scared of them," Ehlers said.
Porter has said all along that the game on March 1 is the game that truly counts for his Lady Wolverines.
"This is one we can win. We need our students there and our community there. We need everybody there," Porter said.
Evanston 12 15 12 6 -- 45
Riverton 15 2 6 5 -- 28
Evanston (45) -- Sarah Peterson 0 0-2 0, Shelley Heap 2 0-2 4, Meghan Cranford 1 1-2 3, McKenzi Kofoed 0 (2) 1-2 7, McKensie Herold 8 1-1 17, Hailey O'Neill 3 2-3 8, Kylie Hurd 0 0-2 0, Laurel Brinkerhoff 0 0-2 0, Pearl Marquez 0 1-2 1, Hope Dillree 0 0-0 0. Totals 16 (2) 7-19 45.
Riverton (28) -- Hannah Soll 0 0-0 0, Annie Phister 0 0-2 0, Shianna Littleshield 0 0-0 0, Kyla Randall 1 0-0 2, Kaylie Randall 0 0-0 0, Marcia Ashdown 1 0-1 2, Taylor Hunt 0 0-0 0, Amy Woodward 3 1-1 7, Kristen Bailey 0 1-2 1, Sheridan Smith 3 0-0 6, Hannah Svilar 4 0-3 8, Maci Evans 0 0-0 0, Kaitlyn Wells 0 0-0 0. Totals 12 4-9 28.
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