Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Madera’s Cathy Figueroa sends a pass to the wing during a 60-47 loss to Sunnyside in a non-league game Thursday. She led the Coyotes with 13 points.
Before the Madera Coyote girls basketball team could settle down from the opening tip, they found themselves trailing the Sunnyside-Fresno Wildcats early in a non-conference game in Joe Flores Gym.
However, the Coyotes chipped away at the lead and tied the game at 27 in the third quarter. Sunnyside then used a 21-4 run to put away the Coyotes in a 60-47 win Thursday.
The Coyotes had their problems shooting the ball. They shot just 23 percent (15-of-66) from the floor, including 3-of-17 (18 percent) from 3-point range. Madera’s trouble shooting the ball also affected them at the foul line. The Coyotes shot just 44 percent (12-of-27) from the charity stripe. However, Sunnyside couldn’t take advantage and shot 14-of-29 (48 percent) themselves.
Cathy Figueroa led the Coyotes with 13 points and BriAnn Houghton added 11 points, but it was not getting the close shots that frustrated head coach Jason Smith.
The Coyotes pulled down 22 offensive rebounds, but only recorded two putbacks, missing many close shots. Madeleine McNeil pulled down 15 rebounds, nine on the offensive glass, but scored just six points. Houghton grabbed 11 rebounds and seven on the offensive glass and didn’t record a putback.
The Coyotes had their chances late in the game, but missed 19 of 23 shots in the fourth quarter despite outscoring the Wildcats.
Sunnyside’s Daniyell Booker scored the first six points and eight of the first 10 during a 21 point night to lead all scorers.
Madera made just two-of-16 field goal attempts — a layup from Figueroa and a long jumper from Kaylee Patlan — and trailed 17-7 at the end of the first quarter.
Sunnyside added three more points to the lead before consecutive layups from Figueroa and Houghton. After a Sunnyside putback, Houghton made a free throw and Patlan turned a steal into a layup to cut the lead to eight.
Sunnyside scored four straight points, but the Coyotes scored six of the next seven points to close out the half. Figueroa found McNeil for a short bucket. Figueroa made a 15-foot jumper, a free throw and a 3-pointer to close out the half trailing 27-22.
Madera extended the run to eight with a short jumper from Houghton, a free throw from McNeil and two free throws from Houghton to tie the score at 27.
However, Sunnyside closed out the third quarter and went into the fourth on a 21-4 run to take back control of the game. Miranda Solis hit a short jumper and Sayra Chavez put back a missed shot for Madera’s only points in the run.
When the run ended, Sunnyside led 48-31. Madera tried to come back with a 15-foot jumper from Chavez and a Figueroa 3-pointer to cut the lead to 12.
Figueroa answered a layup with two free throws and McNeil put back a missed shot and a free throw for a 3-point play. A free throw from Houghton gave Madera hope, trailing 50-42 with 3:09 left in the fourth.
However, Sunnyside scored on three layups and put back an offensive rebound to keep the lead.
Solis hit a 3-pointer and Houghton hit a short jumper to close out a 60-47 loss.