The fifth ranked Lady Buckaroos have their Region 19 foes all corralled up after the first half of region play. Unbeaten in region play, the Bucks routed the Whitehorse Raiders in Monticello Friday with a convincing 79-40 win.
Atlanta Black nearly outscored the entire Raider team with 37 points on the night, a career high for Black.
Izabel Slade continued her stellar play with a double double of her own, 15 points and 15 rebounds, to aid in the big win. Fayette Whitehorse scored 17 for the Lady Raiders.
Black helped the Bucks to an early lead, scoring ten points in the first quarter as the Bucks were up 14-4. The Raiders regrouped a little in the second quarter and got within eight points after a 10-0 run, 25-17.
But the Bucks answered with a 22-2 run of their own, highlighted by 12 more points from Black, and eight by Slade. The Lady Bucks were up 26 at halftime, 45-19. But it wasn’t all Atlanta and Slade, with Ashley Adair (4), Alyssa Reeve (4), Allie Maughan (3) and Tristen Esplin (2) all finding the basket in the first half for coach Kraig Black’s team.
Black added nine more points in the third and six in the fourth to finish the night with 37. Slade finished 15 points and 15 rebounds. Maughan, Reeve and Adair all finished with six points. Maughan also had six assists and six rebounds to go with her six points.
Buckaroo coach Kraig Black likes what he is seeing.
“A fan made a comment, ‘the girls are playing well together,’” he recounted. “Together is key and it is because the girls take care of their individual roles on the team and continue to work to improve themselves individually.”
Black, who had three 3-pointers, also a career high on her career night, was on fire from the field, dropping 15 of 22 shots for 68 percent, as well as four of six at the foul line. She also had seven steals (the Bucks had 18 as a team), and five rebounds.
She is the fourth leading scorer in 1A with an 18.6 ppg average while scoring 27 points per game in Region 19 action. Green River’s Maribel Escalante is fifth in 1A scoring and 17.1 ppg. Izabel Slade has averaged 19 points over the last two Buckaroo wins to help the Buckaroo cause.
The Bucks have raced through their region foes this season in dominating fashion. Four wins over the four opponents saw the Lady Bucks averaging 70 points per game, while the defense, with the help of some pesky full court pressure, are holding their region opponents to just 34 points per contest.
“Region and Whitehorse have given us opportunities to work on certain parts of our game and on individual things,” Coach Black suggested. “The girls are becoming more confident as they have success in those things they are working on.
“The thing I have liked the most is that our girls are learning how to stay in control in all aspects of what we are trying to do. That is often hard against Whitehorse, Monument Valley and Green River.”
The convincing wins also have the 13-2 Lady Bucks back in the 1A rankings at fifth. Wayne, at 15-1, leads 1A followed by fellow Region 20 teams, Bryce Valley, 12-4, Panguitch, 11-5, and Piute, 11-5.
Leading 1A Region 17 are Tabiona and Duchesne, with 10-5 and 8-10 records respectively. Tabiona and Monticello split their two games they played in the preseason.
With two more home region games this coming week, the Bucks look to up their record to 6-0 in region. First, on Tuesday, the Lady Bucks take on the Monument Valley Cougars.
The Cougars, second in Region 19 at 2-1, gave MHS their toughest challenge in region so far this year, dropping a 58-41 encounter with the Bucks. That game was tied at 14 after the first quarter but the Monticello outscored the Cougars 18-3 in the second quarter to take control of the game.
Black led the way with 30 points. Shanisa Eskee led the Cougars with 11 points with Kaylin Bedoni adding 10 and Ervianne Cly, the Cougars leading scorer, tossing in seven points. The Cougars are averaging 53 points a game while giving up 47 points to opponents.
Friday night brings the Pinnacle Panthers to the Buckaroo pen, sporting a 0-4 region record and 1-13 on the season. They are having problems scoring the ball, averaging only 26 points per game while allowing opponents to score 57 ppg.