LAMPASAS — Alexis Lewis could sense the anxiety.
After going back and forth with Fredericksburg for a majority of the first three quarters, Lampasas lost a little steam as the Lady Billies opened a six-point advantage.
Moments later, however, Lady Badgers junior Presli Procter connected on a jumper to trim the deficit to three points at 34-31 with approximately six minutes remaining in the game.
While the shot was much needed, Lewis, who finished with nine points and five rebounds, believes it might have made the score a little too close for comfort for a team with several new faces.
“I think everybody just really panicked because the game was so tight,” the senior post said. “Everybody’s nerves were just on the verge of snapping.”
Following Procter’s lone field goal, Fredericksburg embarked on a 10-3 run to create a double-digit lead and take complete control of the contest en route to a
Although nerves might have played a role in the outcome, Lampasas head coach Jenny Bowden believes there was more to it.
“We pulled out of our halfcourt zone defense to try and get some momentum going our way,” she said, “and they got some quick passes to the basket. Of course, you always risk giving up some layups or shots when you press full court, but we need to get into the flow of making those adjustments by the time district comes.”
Soon after Procter’s shot, teammate Alexis Theus hit a 3-pointer, cutting the score to 34-31, but the Lady Badgers did not make a basket in the final four minutes of the game.
The shooting slump capped off a 5-of-26 showing in the second half, which was a stark contrast to how Lampasas (1-3) opened the game.
With Theus leading the way, scoring eight of her team-high 13 points in the first half, the Lady Badgers made 40 percent of their field-goal attempts before halftime.
In addition to her offensive output, Theus finished with six rebounds and five assists.
“Her game is more efficient from the outside,” Bowden said. “She can still post up and go strong in the paint, but we are utilizing her on the outside and at the point guard position, and I think that is a better fit for her.”
After falling into a 7-2 hole to start the game, Lampasas responded with seven unanswered points as senior guard Raegan Whitehead’s 3-pointer gave the Lady Badgers their first lead of the game at 9-7.
It did not last long, though.
Fredericksburg scored 15 of the game’s next 22 points to open a six-point lead before taking a 22-20 advantage into the third quarter, but Lampasas guard Nola Bishop, who scored eight points, made a pair of baskets to reclaim the lead for her team on two separate occassions. First, she took a pass from Theus and hit a 3-pointer to put the Lady Badgers ahead 23-22 before connecting on a short, baseline jumper for a 25-24 advantage.
But Lampasas’ cushion quickly deflated as the Lady Badgers went cold, failing to hit another shot in the period as the Lady Billies closed the quarter on a 6-0 run.
The scoreless span helped propel Fredericksburg (2-0) to the victory, according to Lewis.
“That was a big factor,” she said.
While the loss was disappointing, Bowden is seeing the progression she expected from her team through the first few games of the season.
“I think they’re doing a good job,” she said. “They kept fighting tonight.”