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MEEKER I For the third year in a row, the Meeker High School girls’ basketball team has won the season-opening White River Electric Cowboy Shootout. The lady Cowboys will be idle this weekend and next play Olathe on Dec. 19.
Meeker opened the season with a 45-35 win over Hayden, then defeated Nucla, 57-49, in the semifinals before beating the Rams from South Routt County, 52-37, in the championship game.
“We played together as a team,” head coach Greg Chintala said. “The first night we were nervous and didn’t shoot well, but we played the other parts of the game well—ball control, rebounds and defensively.”
Against Hayden, Meeker only led by two after the first quarter before opening up and scoring 15 in the second quarter to lead 23-12 at halftime. Hayden pulled within eight at the end of the third quarter, but Meeker put the game away in the fourth.
“The second night, the nerves subsided and we shot the ball better and took care of it,” Chintala said.
The lady Cowboys again started slowly against Nucla, leading 10-8 after the first period. But, like the first game, Meeker broke away in the second quarter, scoring 18 points, including 12 from Sydney Hughes, half her game-high 24 points.
Sophomore Reese Pertile scored 13 points for Meeker against Nucla and senior Megan Parker also finished in double figures with 12. Senior Jamie McLaughlin, sophomores Jenna Walsh and Halle Ahrens, along with freshman Maggie Phelan all added two points each in the semifinal game.
Hughes won the three-point contest held Saturday for the the championship, when she was also named to the all-tournament team and it was Hughes who set the tone in the championship game, scoring eight points in the first quarter and finishing with 25. Parker scored 13 in the championship game.
Hughes finished the tournament with 67 points, Parker scored 31 and Pertile scored 26. McLaughlin totaled eight in the three games and Ahrens finished with six.
“Sydney had a good tournament and Megan shot the ball well Friday and Saturday,” coach Chintala said. “Our team shared the ball well and stayed aggressive, all playing and moving together.”