Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Liberty guard Ashton Berry dribbles the ball past a defender during Tuesday’s loss to Fowler. Berry scored 13 of Liberty’s 24 points.
The Liberty Hawks girls basketball team only had six players suit up for its non-conference game against the Fowler Redcats.
The Hawks were still able to stay with the Redcats, taking a 19-18 lead early in the third quarter and trailing by three early in the fourth quarter. However, two Fowler runs closed out the Hawks with a 37-24 victory Tuesday at Liberty.
“I think fatigue set in,” head coach Ashley Chavira said. “Once you get tired, you start to make mental mistakes so we started throwing the ball away and making turnovers. A lot of it had to do with us being tired, but some had to do with us not being able to adjust to their defense.”
Ashton Berry, playing in her first game with the Hawks after transferring from Madera, led Liberty with 13 points.
“We did see some positives,” Chavira said. “It has been a struggle for us the last month or so. We’ve changed up practices a bit. It’s just going to take time.”
The Hawks continue play in the Immanuel Tournament today before playing at Madera South on Tuesday.
“I have to be able to make adjustments and explain it to them,” Chavira. “I see it and explain it to them, but it takes a little longer for them to catch on. They tried their hardest.”
The Redcats held a 18-10 lead late in the first half. However, a bucket and free throw from Berry and a layup from Karsyn Woods off an inbounds pass led a five-point run to cut the lead to three at the half.
Berry scored the first four points of the third quarter and the Hawks took a 19-18 lead.
However, Fowler went to the free throw line, sinking five free throws in a 9-0 run for a 27-19 lead heading to the end of the third quarter.
Brianna Melgoza hit a 16-foot jumper at the end of the quarter. Devine opened the fourth quarter with a free throw and a short jumper to cut the Fowler lead to three.
However, the Hawks couldn’t find the bucket the rest of the way while Fowler closed the game scoring the final 10 straight points for the victory.