They faced the team with the worst record in the Far West League, the South Umpqua Lancers and, on paper, should have cruised to an easy victory.
Someone failed to inform the Lancers that they were supposed to be the losing team though, and the Bruins collapsed late in the fourth quarter to lose by three in overtime, 55-58.
“We didn’t value the ball as much as we needed to,” senior Brianna Juarez said following the game. “At crucial points in the game we didn’t make the plays that we needed to.”
The Bruins’ final regular season home game was bittersweet for Juarez and her fellow senior teammates, Whitney Floyd and Kambri Coleman who were honored for their years of dedication to Lady Bruin basketball.
Juarez isn’t going to let the loss keep her from giving her all though.
“I don’t think we have a choice,” she said. “We’re going to pull together as a team. We have to work harder, and get as far as we can.”
Head Coach Chris Schofield found positive notes among all of the negative aspects of a loss.
“I though we played really well in the third quarter,” he said. “The momentum switched though, and we couldn’t get out of our own way.”
The Bruins began the game a little slower than usual as they scored 10 points to the Lancers’ 9, but went into the break having scored 13 in the second quarter and holding a 4-point lead.
The style of Bruin basketball that BHHS fans expected to see from their team made an appearance in the fourth quarter when, with two minutes remaining, the Bruins went on an 8-0 run to end the third up by 16, 41-25.
“We got up late in the third quarter, early in the fourth, and then we stopped trying,” Schofield said. “We lost that sense of urgency on defense and stopped moving our feet.”
The Lady Bruins gave up 22 points in the fourth, including 10 point from the free-throw line as the Bruins gave the Lancers eight trips to the line.
The Bruins put only 6 points on the board in the fourth and the game went into overtime, 47-47.
Three Bruins fouled out in overtime, including Juarez, Mallory McDonald and Lakota Hatcher, and the lack of McDonald’s ball handling skills, Juarez’ outside shooting and Hatcher inside presence put a hitch in the Bruins’ stride as they lost 55-58.
“We had our chances to put them away and let our foot off the accelerator,” Schofield said. “I’m proud though of that group that was on the floor in overtime. They had the chance to roll over and give up, and they didn’t.
“They kept working hard and gave it all they had.”
McDonald led the team with 14 points, Juarez had 13 and Hatcher had 12. Iva Hart and Courtney Kay both had 7 points while Jordyn Keys rounded out the Lady Bruins scorers with 2 points.
The Bruins travel to face the first-place Sutherlin Bulldogs on Tuesday. The game is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.
The JV team claimed the only Lady Bruins’ victory on the night as they won 47-26, according to JV coach Daryn Farmer.