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HRV girls basketball ‘just never there mentally’ versus Pendleton

HRV girls basketball was back at home last Friday night versus Pendleton after opening Columbia River Conference play on a three-game road trip. Against the Buckaroos last week, the Eagles lost by a final score of 45-28. The loss to Pendleton puts the Eagles at 1-3 in conference place and HRV remains in  third-place in league standings. Junior guard Haylee Baker led the Eagles in scoring with 11 points on the night, including 2-4 shooting from three.

Photo by RJ Chavez
HRV girls basketball was back at home last Friday night versus Pendleton after opening Columbia River Conference play on a three-game road trip. Against the Buckaroos last week, the Eagles lost by a final score of 45-28. The loss to Pendleton puts the Eagles at 1-3 in conference place and HRV remains in third-place in league standings. Junior guard Haylee Baker led the Eagles in scoring with 11 points on the night, including 2-4 shooting from three.



After winning its first Columbia River Conference game since the 2011-12 season last week at The Dalles, the HRV girls basketball team ended the week’s competition at home versus the number one team in the league, the Pendleton Buckaroos.

“I hate making excuses, but the truth is our girls were just mentally fried,” said Head Coach Donnie Herneisen regarding his team’s 45-28 home loss to Pendleton last Friday night. “We had just finished Finals Week, and in fact, one player was still finishing a final for a college course she was taking at 6:30 p.m., with a 7 p.m. tip-off time. We were just never there mentally.”

“That being said, we have to find a way to play through those tough times,” said Herneisen.

The loss moves HRV to 1-3 through the first four games of league play, which is currently enough for third place standing in the CRC. The win for Pendleton keeps them at first place in the CRC as they’re 4-0 in league play.

Early on this game, the Eagles were down by a score of 12-3 before fighting back to take a 16-14 lead after one quarter, “but then our own turnovers really hammered us,” said Herneisen.

The Eagles totaled 22 turnovers in this game, but as Herneisen explained, the turnover numbers weren’t as eye-opening as the actual play on the court from his girls.

“Statistically speaking, it wasn’t the worst game for us,” said Herneisen. “But it just felt like we were never present on the court. Some our more dependable players barely even showed up on the stat line.”

The only Eagle in double-figures scoring the basketball Friday night was junior guard Haylee Baker, who had 11 points on 4-9 shooting, including 2-4 from behind the arc. Baker also led the team in steals with three on the night.

Lauren Orr followed with nine points and eight rebounds.

Outside of these two athletes, no other girl had more than five points and the rest of the team combined for eight points on Friday night.

“Hopefully the long weekend will give our girls the chance to rest and recharge before Hermiston,” said Herneisen.

Upcoming Games:

The girls were back home on Tuesday night versus Hermiston (results unavailable at press time). Hermiston came into this game coming off a loss to Pendleton early last week and went on to barely squeeze by The Dalles by six points last Friday. Heading into this game, Herneisen feels that there is a “mental block” with his team when they go up against Hermiston.

“I think there is this mental block with us playing Hermiston, thinking of them as some huge juggernaut,” said Herneisen. “We proved in the first half of the first game that we could play with them. I think if we can take care of the ball and get some scoring production from our guards, we can give Hermiston a heck of a game. This is our last shot at Hermiston at home, so it would be nice to send them home unhappy for once.”

After Tuesday night’s game, the Eagles will be at home to end the week as they welcome The Dalles on Friday, Feb. 9. Tip-off for this game is at 5:30 p.m. at Vannet Court.



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