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MEEKER I The Meeker High School girls’ varsity basketball team opened its 2015 portion of the season on their home court, splitting two games, losing to league rival Cedaredge on Friday then beating Paonia on Saturday.
Meeker’s varsity will play three games this week, starting tonight, when they host Hayden, then they travel to Grand Junction to play Caprock Academy before returning home Saturday to host Hotchkiss.
Against Cedaredge, Meeker took a 13-8 lead after the first quarter but fell behind in the second quarter. They never caught up.
“There is a reason Cedaredge is 8-0,” Meeker head coach Greg Chintala said of the Bruins, who just dropped down to 2A and are currently ranked No. 3 by Maxpreps.com.
Chintala said it was a “four-point game with four minutes to play and they hit their shots at the end and we didn’t.”
Meeker lost 46-29, and senior Sydney Hughes led the team with 10 points. Megan Parker and Reece Pertile each scored seven, including two three-pointers by Parker while Pertile pulled down 16 rebounds.
The loss did not keep the girls down as they came back Saturday and defeated the Eagles 64-57.
“The kids came out and competed,” Chintala said. “They wanted to get the 50/50 balls.”
Meeker ended the first quarter ahead 14-11, then doubled their lead to six points at halftime. Paonia held Meeker to seven points in the third quarter and scored 15 of their own to take a two-point lead going into the final period.
“Paonia had moments they made runs and we could have folded, but our girls stepped up,” coach Chintala said.
The girls scored 26 points in the fourth and held the Eagles to 17 for the victory.
“What was huge for us was we hit our free throws,” coach Chintala said of his team, which made 25 of 33 from the charity line.
Hughes again led her team with 26 points, making 15 of 18 free throws. Parker and Pertile each scored 11, Jenna Walsh added eight, Jamie McLaughlin scored six and Madi Shults made a basket for two.