Coyotes no match for Panthers
Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Madera’s Aaliyah String goes up for a shot during Friday’s loss to the San Joaquin Memorial Panthers. She scored a team-high nine points Friday night.
The Madera Coyotes girls basketball team was just trying to survive its latest home game against the San Joaquin Memorial Panthers.
The Coyotes fell behind 20-4 after the first quarter and the 40-point running clock could have been initiated midway through the third quarter.
The Panthers easily defeated the Coyotes, 81-19, on Friday in Joe Flores Gym.
Despite the rout, Madera head coach Jason Smith saw some glimpses of positives from his team.
“In this game, when we followed fundamental steps defensively, when we cut off the middle, when we stayed physical and finished off with a strong box out, we were successful,” he said. “Whether it was their speed, athleticism or skill, we didn’t do those things consistently.”
The Coyotes turned the ball over 40 times in the game, including 26 in the first half. Meanwhile, the Panthers had just seven.
Aaliyah String led the Coyotes with nine points as just four players scored for the Coyotes.
“On the offensive end, their aggressiveness bothered us,” Smith said. “When we stuck to our fundamentals, we had success. We weren’t consistent. When they did the things they were coached to do, they were successful. We didn’t do those things consistently.”
String scored the first points of the game by taking a blocked shot and putting it in for a bucket.
The Panthers hit a 3-pointer and they scored three straight layups off three straight turnovers.
Eliana Jaramillo stopped the run with a short bucket for the Coyotes.
However, the Panthers scored the next 13 points heading into the second quarter.
In the run, Madera turned the ball over five times and couldn’t get an offensive rebound to trail 20-4 at the end of the first quarter.
String stopped the run with a pair of free throws and Jaramillo answered an Panthers’ layup with a layup of her own.
After two Panthers’ free throws, String put back a miss. However, the Panthers scored the next 15 points for a 43-10 halftime lead.
After the Panthers extended the run to 17-0 with the first points of the second half, String put back a miss for a Madera bucket.
Then, the Panthers scored five more points before Jania Warren put back another miss.
Five Panthers points later, Brooke Houghton stopped the run with a layup.
Then, Memorial hit three 3-pointer during a 15-point run for a 70-16 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
String made a layup to open the fourth quarter, but the Panthers scored the next 11 points before a Houghton free throw. Houghton added another free throw later for the 81-19 final score.
The Coyotes will try to get back on track at Sanger on Tuesday and at home against Justin Garza on Friday.