It took awhile for the Bear River girls basketball squad to get things rolling Tuesday night at home against Roseville, but they turned it on in the second half and added another “W” to the win column with a 59-26 victory to remain perfect this season.
Bear River (9-0) and Roseville (1-6) both looked sloppy at times, and foul trouble quickly became an issue for Bear River’s leading scorer Kaitlyn Reina who picked up her third before the first half ended. But, Bear River’s defense was lights out and that kept them ahead for most the night.
Maddi Dunn created several fast break opportunities with her cat-like reflexes as she frequently disrupted Roseville’s offensive scheme, getting her hands on the ball. Dunn finished with six points, five assists and three steals.
“I watch the girls’ eyes,” said Dunn. “You’ve got to be ready for it always. It’s anticipation.”
The Lady Bruins struggled to knock down shots from the perimeter despite executing swift passes and finding the open opportunities. The tempo of the game continued to be somewhat sluggish, a half-court style with frequent fouls and turnovers.
“(Roseville) played a lot of zone,” Bear River coach Jeff Bickmore said. “We had good ball movement and plays in transition. Our shots just weren’t falling in the first half.”
Roseville was never able to get comfortable either, as the Lady Bruins continued to be a nuisance blocking shots, tipping passes and forcing jump balls.
The real anchor for Bear River proved to be Teryn Rath who provided stability down low, posting up and grabbing boards in the paint. Rath finished with 10 points and nine rebounds.
“As soon as we started working together everything went smoother,” said Rath. “We just need to learn to take care of the ball, stay poised and run our offense.”
At the half, the Lady Bruins led 26-12, but had yet to show what they were truly capable of. Forcing three turnovers on Roseville’s first three possessions, Bear River looked as if it was on to something, but fouls remained a problem as the Lady Bruins committed six in just six minutes to open the second half.
Eventually they gathered their composure and grabbed more offensive rebounds and dropped in some 3-pointers to extend their lead to 44-21 heading into the fourth.
“This is a team we should beat,” said Bickmore. “We really wanted to take away their No. 33, but she took away our players driving to the basket getting fouled. I wish we would have played better.”
Outside shooting was definitely a strong point for the Lady Bruins in the second half, especially for Jennifer Alberts who converted on three of five attempts. Alberts led the team in scoring with 13 points and continued to add fuel to the Lady Bruins’ fire.
“My feet were set and I was ready to shoot,” said Alberts. “We’re lucky we didn’t play a hard team. We eventually warmed up, but it wasn’t our best game.”
Alberts led the charge during a stretch in which Bear River went on a scoring spree connecting on three three-pointers and later added two more in the fourth quarter as Bear River’s dominance continued with an 18-3 run.
“Jenn shot really well,” Bickmore said. “We’re usually pretty decent from outside. Rath showed great toughness and rebounding, running down the balls. Reina got into foul trouble early and this game had a flow different than the others.”
Roseville finished the night attempting 21 free throws, but only converted 12 of them.
The Lady Bruins travel down the road to the Placer Tournament this Thursday where they will open against Rocklin.
To contact Sports Writer Brian Shepard, call (530) 477-4234 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.