The Lord Botetourt girls traveled to Roanoke Friday to play William Fleming for first place in the Blue Ridge District and came up just short. The host Colonels took a 50-44 win to remain unbeaten in BRD play while LB lost a district game for the first time.
Fleming jumped on top early in this one, scoring the first 12 points of the game and racing to a 28-8 halftime lead. However, it was a different looking Cavalier team that came out for the second half and the visitors made it a ballgame.
“We were really struggling on the offensive end to not only take care of the ball but hit anything and went three for 24 from the floor in the first half,” said LB coach Renee Favaro. “At the half I told them we were better than that and that they had two choices, roll over or make a run back at them. They showed a lot of grit and heart to make a run.”
LB cut the lead to two at one point in the third quarter, but rebounding hurt the Cavs. LB gave up 16 offensive rebounds which led to 11 second chance points and Fleming getting 14 more shot attempts than the Cavaliers.
“We told them they showed us what they are capable of and we expect to see that kind of effort daily,” said Favaro. “Assistant coach Kate Spradlin Failla said to them, ‘Once you show it, you own it,’ so we are hoping they own it every day now.”
Madilyn Winterton led LB with 17 points, nine deflections and four steals despite some foul trouble in the first half. Taylor Orange added 13 points, all in the third quarter, while Gracie Huffard grabbed 12 rebounds along with six points and five blocks.
The loss was one of three games the Cavaliers played last week, and they won the other two. They opened the week with a 78-47 win over Northside in Daleville. The girls shot 51 percent from the floor, had 20 assists and forced 34 turnovers, 20 of which came in the second half.
“I was not real happy with our defense in the first half and let the girls know that,” said Favaro. “It took some motivating to get us to play to our standard on that end. We are capable of defending better than we have been at times.”
Winterton led the way with 20 points, six steals and five assists. Orange added 18 points and six assists and Huffard chipped in 12 points and eight boards.
A night later the Cavs played at Salem and took a 56-36 win. Botetourt’s defense held the Spartans to 22 percent shooting and forced 28 turnovers.
“This game I did not think we played that well offensively but were still able to win every quarter and control the game start to finish with our defense,” said Favaro.
Orange led the way with 23 points. Ainsley Anderson added 11 points, six assists and four steals.
The girls come into the week with a 10-4 overall record and a 2-1 mark in the district. They were scheduled to play at home against Franklin County, who was also 2-1 in the BRD, on Tuesday, then host Staunton River on Friday.