Pine-Richland girls basketball wants to build on 1st section win

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Sunday, January 14, 2018 | 10:34 PM


An 0-3 start in Section 1-6A play was not what the Pine-Richland girls basketball team envisioned. On Thursday, however, the Rams (3-7, 1-3) found a way to right the ship, toppling rival North Hills, 45-30, to earn their first section victory.

The victory for coach Tom Reighard's team was crucial as it allows it to stay in the hunt for a playoff berth. But more importantly, the win might help provide a blueprint for how the team can rack up wins as it stares down a schedule that includes six more section contests.

“We have to play a full 32 minutes, a complete game. We struggled with that a little bit in some other games. We just lose it mentally for a little bit, and it's hard to get it back. In some of our losses we've had some really bad quarters, and it's just tough to get back in those games,” Reighard said.

“I think it's just from a lack of experience playing together. We need a complete game, a team game, for us to win section games. Everyone needs to be involved and do their job, and we'll be fine.”

In addition to playing a 32-minute game against North Hills, Pine-Richland appeared to play best in the first and fourth quarters.

The Rams went on a 12-3 run in the first quarter and outscored the Indians, 15-5, in the final quarter.

Another encouraging aspect of the victory was the performance from the team leaders.

Seniors Taylor Brenner and Kayla Graf scored in double digits, with Brenner tallying 13 points and Graf collecting 10 points. Sophomore Meghan Luellen scored 12 points in addition to holding North Hills leading scorer, Jordan O'Malley, to five.

“Everyone really stepped up. We had those three girls in double-figures for us, and they really helped lead the way. Our post players stepped it up, too. They were great with their rebounding and defense. Everybody has to be involved for it to be a complete game for us,” Reighard said.

“Once you get that first section win, you know, you're eager for another one.”

Kevin Lohman is a freelance writer.

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