LONGMONT — Having lost six of the past seven games, the Longmont girls basketball team was in a position Tuesday night against Silver Creek the Trojans have simply not been accustomed to — that being falling behind the pack in the Northern League standings.
More importantly, however, is that their season might have just turned on a dime by defending their home turf against the Raptors. As tight a game as there has been in the series over the past six contests, Longmont was able to hold off a furious late rally from the Raptors and take a 53-48 victory at the LHS gym, putting the Trojans at 2-2 in a league that seems wide open.
For Longmont's Kennedy Sheetz, the game came down to the play of the entire team, one which finally battled through some tough spots when it mattered to go to 3-8 overall.
The Trojans were in a position to win it with free throws down the stretch, and Sheetz made four clutch shots from the stripe to reel in the win.
"We just really came out with energy tonight, and we were hungry to go get a win. It took a whole team effort to get through that game and we really needed it," Sheetz said after a seven-point, five-rebound effort. "We had to play strong those last couple of minutes, because we knew (Silver Creek) could take it down and score (quickly). We had to get some offensive rebounds, and it really came down to knocking down our free throws."
Longmont outscored SCHS 20-8 in the third quarter to overcome a halftime deficit, and much of that rally had to do with the bench coming on and hitting shots.
Sophomore reserve Annika Wetterstrom had six of her 10 points in the quarter, and Riley Bolte added four points as well for LHS, which went on a 12-2 run to close out the third with a Sheetz 3-pointer breaking a 27-27 tie.
Jenna Moore, another reserve, added six points in the fourth quarter to help keep Silver Creek's Kayla Noble from leading a full-on comeback for the Raptors (7-5, 1-3 Northern). Sheetz and Eva D'Epagnier each had big defensive plays down the stretch, as well, to create turnovers on three consecutive possessions.
Noble scored nine of her 12 points in the final stanza but had several assists early in the game as Silver Creek led 21-19 at half. Violet Kennedy also had 13 points for the Raptors.
Emma Carney led Longmont with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
"Annika was on fire, and it was a game when we really needed her to shoot," Sheetz said. "It was great to see her break out of her shell a little bit."
Longmont 53, Silver Creek 48
At Longmont HS
SILVER CREEK (7-5, 1-3)
S. Hebert 0 0-0 0, Noble 4 2-3 12, Kennedy 5 3-5 13, Volkmann 2 0-0 5, Salmeron 3 2-2 8, Scott 0 0-0 0, K. Hebert 1 0-0 2, Nicholas 2 0-0 4, James 0 0-0 0, Tyrrell 2 0-0 4. Totals 19 7-10 48.
LONGMONT (3-8, 2-2)
Nichols 2 2-5 6, Wiley 0 0-0 0, Moore 2 4-4 6, Wetterstrom 4 2-2 10, Carney 4 3-5 11, Fixmer 2 0-0 5, D'Epagnier 1 0-0 2, Bolte 2 0-0 4, Sheetz 1 4-4 7. Totals 18 15-20 53.
Score by quarters:Silver Creek 11 10 8 17 — 48
Longmont 9 10 20 14 — 53
3-point field goals — Silver Creek (3): Noble 2, Volkmann; Longmont (2): Fixmer, Sheetz.