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The Lady Pirates opened the regular basketball season on the road against 3A Marsh Valley. On Friday, Nov. 19 they hosted Grace in their home opener (score unavailable before press time) and Tuesday, Nov. 23 they travel to Firth. The varsity games will begin at 7:30 p.m., JV at 6 p.m. The freshmen team will only play Firth at 4:30 p.m. on the 23.

West Side got off to a slow start against the Eagles scoring just six points in the first quarter but only trailed by five going into the second. A 13-point second quarter narrowed the deficit to three at the half.

“I think first-game nerves were present when we started the game,” said Coach Bridgett Checketts, who was pleased with the determination her team showed. “They did not let themselves get discouraged and give up. I was really proud and excited for the girls to make a run for it. We were moving the ball well and seeing each other.”

In the second half the Pirates couldn’t maintain their momentum. They hung with Marsh Valley throughout the third, scoring eight points to the Eagles’ nine making it 27-31 going into the fourth quarter, but then ran out of steam.

Scoring just four points in the final frame was not enough and West Side lost the contest 31-45; however, Checketts is confident that the teamwork and perseverance they brought to the game will be key and will only improve as the season progresses.

Junior Natalie Lemmon, who fouled out in the fourth quarter, was a big inside presence for the Pirates.

“Natalie worked so hard for the team and it was paying off,” said Checketts. “She led the team with 13 points, five blocks, six defensive rebounds, and seven offensive rebounds.”

Aubrie Barzee, Timberly Dean and Jocie Phillips added four points each for the Pirates, Laney Beckstead and Letti Phillips three apiece and Tommi Hendersen two.

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