Lady Spires' struggles continue; Leavenworth falls for second straight night

The hole just continues to get deeper for the University of Saint Mary women’s basketball team.
Trying to snap a five-game losing streak, the Lady Spires hosted Kansas Wesleyan Thursday night. Unfortunately for USM, things went from bad to worse when the squad lost 78-53.
“Everything,” Saint Mary coach Mike Basler said of the cause for his team’s struggles. “It can get worse, we haven’t hit rock bottom, but I don’t really feel like we are good enough in any area to win games right now. The biggest thing is we aren’t valuing the ball and not keeping others off the scoreboard.”
Versus Kansas Wesleyan, a disastrous first half sunk the Lady Spires early. The home squad gave up 50 points to its visitors and faced a 21-point deficit at half.
The second period saw the Wildcats outscore USM 28-24, but the improved play by Saint Mary never translated into a honest rally.
Statistically, the Lady Spires went 3-of-17 from the 3-point line, committed 17 turnovers and shot 36 percent from the field.
USM, 4-7 overall and 0-3 in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference, will try to snap its six-game slide when it hosts Sterling College at 5 p.m.
“We feel we have an experienced squad and they are just going to have to bow their necks and keep working,” Basler said. “Quitting won’t fix this. Hard work will.”

Lady Pioneers suffer tough loss to South
Whether it was an emotional and physical hangover, the Leavenworth girls’ basketball team had troubles rebounding from a narrow loss on Tuesday in its game against Olathe South on Thursday.
After coming up nine-points short of a major upset versus Blue Valley earlier in the week, the Lady Pioneers struggled against Olathe South to the tune of a 48-23 loss in the second round of the Olathe South Tournament.
“We just didn’t play well,’ Leavenworth coach Derek Zeck said. “We played with no legs, no energy and we just seemed to still be recovering from the hard loss on Tuesday.”
The game began well for the Lady Pioneers, but a 21-5 run by South in the second quarter blew open the contest. From there, Leavenworth couldn’t find its footing to get back into the ball game.
Rachel Blackburn led the team in scoring with 10 points while Emma Zeck and Rashayla Mathis each had four.
The Pioneers will play Olathe East at 6:30 p.m. tonight to wrap up the competition.
“Right now our confidence is shaken, especially after tonight,” Zeck said. “We are going to see what were made out of tomorrow and see if we can get back some of the that swagger.”