Close losses at home are difficult to swallow. But when you truly believe that there’s little you could have done better and that you grew from the game, things become a bit more digestible.
Especially when it’s non-district and doesn’t hurt your record.
Such is what happened on Thursday for the Clarksville Lady Wildcats, who lost to the Cane Ridge Lady Ravens 48-45.
After missing a game-tying free throw and having a potential steal called as a foul, CHS found themselves down three with four seconds left. They felt they drew up the inbound pass they wanted, but Cane Ridge swatted it down, forcing the Lady Wildcats to try and execute the same play, but this time from the sideline instead of the baseline.
Without a timeout to call a new play, they were forced to try the same play from a new angle and the Lady Ravens were able to snuff it out.
“I thought at times we moved the ball really, really well,” said Clarksville coach Brian Rush. “I thought we were unselfish. I thought we found inside and we hit our outside shots. It was a physical game and you can say, ‘Well we got bumped here, we got bumped there.’ But we bumped them a lot of times too. It was kind of a playoff atmosphere type game.”
Led by Kate Howard’s 12, three different Lady Wildcats reached double digits along with Mya Collins’ 11 and Erin Lackey’s 10.
The importance of a tournament-caliber game at the end of the season against a team that can’t damage your district record was appealing to CHS.
“It’s huge,” Rush said. “If you can go outside of the district and play a really good team, it allows you to play more girls and take some chances with some things and learn and grow.
“For us, this was an excellent night to do that, especially on a Thursday night. Our girls get to rest tomorrow night. I think this time of year with all the sickness going around the schools, for us to get an extra day’s rest, huge.”
Cane Ridge (48): Aniya Young 17, Jada Anthony 14, Jeremanisha McCaughy 8, Jasmine Greer 6, Charlee Floyd 2, Taylor Allen 1.
Clarksville (45): Kate Howard 12, Mya Collins 11, Erin Lackey 10, Alexis Wimberly 5, Emersen Head 5, LeeAnn Swinson 2.