Getting off to a good start was one of the main objectives for the Big Spring Lady Steers in Tuesday’s game against Fort Stockton in Steer Gym.
How’s a 17-1 run for starters en route to a 60-18 win?
“We talked about that since the last game,“ BSHS head coach Mike Warren said. “We got good shots against their zone just passing the ball around and inside to Cerbi Ritchey, inside to Diamond Mayes. That opened up stuff on the outside.”
The Lady Steers did just about everything right in Tuesday’s win. Warren wasn’t kidding about Big Spring’s open shots from beyond the arc. Mackenzie Stone led the way with 14 points, making four 3-pointers. Valerie Ross had 13 points with three buckets from the 3-point line. Bridgette Tuitt chipped in 10.
The Lady Steers saw first-hand how effective the full-court press can be. One of the reasons for the quick start was the consistent pressure Big Spring applied on Fort Stockton. The Prowlers didn’t make a basket until 7:05 in the second period.
Meanwhile, Ross and Stone got things going from the 3-point line and the Lady Steers had contributions from Bridgette Tuitt and Logan Yarbar, among others.
“We just went out there and we hustled,” Ross said. “We worked as a team and that’s all we could have hoped for.
“What’s good about this team is that we have a fresh five who always come in and that always helps out our first five.”
It seemed like no matter who was in for Big Spring, Fort Stockton couldn’t really get anything going. The first-quarter sputter prevented the Prowlers from ever making the game close.
Warren noted the Lady Steers might see a lot of zone this season, so it’s good news when Ross and Stone are both knocking down long-distance shots. Warren said it’s like a “double-edged sword” when those two are shooting well. Opponents almost have to pick their poison between Stone and Ross on the outside or Mayes and Ritchey in the post.
Ross said Stone has been helping her with her 3-point shooting and both players acknowledge how vital it can be to the team’s success if they can hit those shots on a consistent basis.
“Everyone else works hard, so you want to come in and work hard too,” Stone said. “You want to fill that potential, you want to make everything better.”
With wins over San Angelo Lake View, Abilene Cooper and now Fort Stockton, Warren said his squad has reason to be excited — not too excited, though.
The coach stressed the importance of staying grounded. The tougher games are yet to come.
“I told them to stay humble,” Warren said. “They’re not used to winning, so this has been a two-year project. I’m excited. I hope we’re going to turn the corner here and just continue on and keep getting better.”