• Keith Hjelle

Many Questions About Charger Girls 41-35 Loss to WCV

When a friend texted "Don't really have much to say" following the ACGC girls' 41-35 loss to West Central Valley last night, I thought the same thing. It is a game best to be forgotten by ACGC fans, parents, and especially the Charger players. Nothing will be accomplished by replaying the game in one's mind. As Charger coach Brad Baudler often says, "On to the next."

It was clear early on that it was going to be a game that deserved to be forgotten. Neither team scored a field goal until there was less than a minute to go in the first quarter when Mercedes Richter connected for the home team. When the quarter end, the Chargers had doubled the score on the Wildcats at 4-2!!

The scoring picked up a bit in the second frame, but the game still lacked any flow. With just under three minutes remaining until the halftime break, Alaina Bunde scored from inside to give the Chargers their biggest lead of the game at 13-5. WCV responded with a 9-0 run to take the lead at 14-13. When Kiley Young hit two free throws with twenty two seconds left it gave ACGC a 15-14 halftime lead.

The game went back and forth during the third quarter with the lead changing hands four times. Richter did her best to keep the game close, as the freshman netted seven of the twelve ACGC points in the third quarter. Her efforts helped the Chargers maintain a one point lead at 27-26 heading into the final eight minutes.

After Reagan Carney open the final frame with a two point basket, ACGC failed to score again until there were two and a half minutes remaining in the game, and by then the Wildcats had opened a 36-29 lead.

It was at that point that this observer finally realized that the Chargers were going to lose this game. Up until then, there existed confidence that the Chargers would pull it out. But with how the game had been played, it was clear that ACGC was not going to overcome a seven point deficit. The Chargers got within five points twice, the last time at 40-35, but that was with only thirty five seconds showing on the clock. Too little, too late!

Richter led the Charger scoring with 11 points and Kylie Young also scored in double figures with 10. Saige O'Brien led in rebounding with 5 boards. The Chargers shot 33% from the field, connecting on 11 of 33 tries. Of the 33 shots taken, 19 were from beyond the arc where the Chargers made just 3 shots.

So, how did this less than stellar performance happen? After all ACGC had scored a twenty point win over WCV in their first matchup back in December. Was it fatigue? This was the fourth Charger game in six days. Was it a lack of confidence? After all, the Chargers had lost by nearly thirty points to Nodaway Valley less than twenty four hours prior to this game. Was the team emotionally drained? Did "Senior Night" have anything to do with it? Or, is it best to just forget about it and go "on to the next"?

These are questions that can only be speculated about. Only the "basketball gods" know the answers, and they are not talking! Oh, there is this. The WCV coach is none other than Dan Druivengay, the former Panorama coach who won over 80% of his games at Panorama. Could that be a factor?

The Chargers will get a well deserved rest for the rest of this week, and then will finish the regular season on the road at Pleasantville and Woodward-Granger on February 8 and 9 respectively.

Score by quarter:

WCV 2 12 12 15--41

ACGC 4 11 12 8--35

Individual statistics: (TP-REB-ASTS- STLS) TCarlson (3-2-1-0) Dorsey (2-3-2-0) Carney (2-0-10) Young (10-0-1-2) McClain (0-2-1-0) Bunde (7-4-0-1) O'Brien (1-5-0-0) Richter (11-0-0-1)

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