Sabercats’ top scorers are bunched together

Girls hoops team not a simple squad for opponents to figure out


Castle View has a confusing girls basketball team this season.

It is hard for opposing teams to figure out who is the go-to player that needs to be contained.

The Sabercats’ four leading scorers for the season are bunched within an average of two points per game, and the spread-out scoring was evident on Jan. 31 in Castle View’s 59-46 loss to Regis Jesuit in the Raiders’ gym.

There were only six points separating five players in the loss where Castle View shot poorly and turned the ball over 10 times in the first half.

“We’re a well-rounded team,” said senior guard Hannah Cushman. “So if they take away one player, another player can make the shots.

“That’s one thing our coach has always liked about our team that we are well-rounded and so they just can’t take away one player. We can all still play and they just can’t try to take away one aspect of our game because somebody else can score, somebody else can do it. The other team doesn’t know who to guard and they don’t know who to take away.”

Key moments

Castle View trailed by 19 points early in the third quarter but mounted a comeback and got to within five points at 43-38 on a basket by Cushman with 4:39 remaining in the game.

However, the Raiders outscored the Sabercats 16-8 the remainder of the game as they cashed in on 9-of-12 free throw attempts.

Key players/statistics

Cushman led Castle View with 11 points. Sophomore India Cole had eight, junior Alexis Walker seven, junior McKay Vansickle six and senior Brandi Bain five.

Francesca Belibi, the 6-foot-1 Regis sophomore who on Jan. 6 against Grand Junction became the first Colorado girl known to have dunked a ball in a game, had 13 points to lead the Raiders, who shot 49 percent from the floor.

Belibi went strong to the basket several times and appeared to want to dunk but three times drew charging fouls.

They said it

“We took the same shots they took,” said Castle View coach Matt Hema. “They made them and we didn’t. We had threes on the outside. They were open but we missed them. We had shots inside, we missed them. We had free throws, we missed them.”

Cushman noted there were friendly rivalries going on during the game.

“A lot of our players know a lot of their players from club basketball and all the years before, so we kind of all knew what each other did,” she said.

A Regis timeout seemed to halt the Castle View comeback.

“We were all getting hyped up and we were all getting into it and then he (Regis coach Carl Mattei) called a timeout and somehow it just didn’t go our way,” explained Cushman. “The first-half turnovers definitely killed us and we didn’t get up as many shots as we wanted. The second half we took care of the ball better, we got more shots and we made more shots and cut their lead down.”

Going forward

Castle View, 12-7 overall and 4-2 in the league following the loss to Regis, goes to Douglas County for a Feb. 10 game.


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