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Lady Vikings finish solid year strong

John Michaels
IVN Contributing Writer

The Lorna Byrne Middle School girls basketball team completed their season on a high note, going 2-0 with a victories over Shady Cove on Monday and Valley on Wednesday last week. The Lady Vikings finished the year with a 6-2 record.
On Monday, Lorna Byrne rallied from a poor first quarter and dominated the final quarter in a 34-22 win over the Shady Cove Wolverines. The Lady Vikings struggled in the opening quarter and trailed 12-4 after one. The Green and Gold got a strong defensive second quarter holding the visiting Wolverines to just a single bucket , while scoring nine points to cut the deficit to one going into the break, 14-13.
Vivienne Klein matched Shady Cove by herself, scoring four of Lorna Byrne’s six points in the third period, and the Vikings took a 19-18 lead going into the final frame. Skilyn Deckert caught fire in the final period, scoring nine points and Lorna Byrne scored 15 total, while holding the Wolverines to four again. While dominating the final quarter, the Vikings turned a close game into a 34-22 rout.
Deckert finished with 11 points to lead Lorna Byrne, while Klein added eight. Saray Mendoza chipped in six points and numerous rebounds and blocked shots. Asriel Miller pitched in four points, while Mac Latimer had two points. Natalie Praetor closed out the scoring for the Vikings with one point.
On Wednesday, the Green and Gold built a huge lead, only to have to hold off a furious rally from the Valley Vipers to close the season with a 32-31. The initial period was very competitive, and Lorna Byrne held a slim 6-5 lead after one. The second quarter saw the Lady Vikings go on a 13-4 run to take a 19-9 lead at the intermission. Klein was instrumental in staking Lorna Byrne to the big lead, scoring the last eight points of the half.
Klein extended her streak to 10 points in a row in the third frame, but Lorna Byrne could only get points from Klein and Miller in the quarter, as Valley cut the gap in half, 27-22 going into the final stanza. The Lady Vikings offensive woes continued in the final quarter with Mendoza getting an offensive put back and Klein another basket through the opening minutes of the final quarter.
With 3:18 to go in the game, Valley scored to tie the game at 31-31. Both teams had trouble finding the hoop and the score remained tied until Miller was fouled with 55 seconds left. Miller hit the first free throw, but missed the second. The Vipers came down with a chance to win the game, but Klein blocked a shot and then stole the ball after Valley retained possession. Lorna Byrne was able to run out the clock and garner the season-ending win.
Klein lit up the Vipers for 15 points to lead the Lady Vikings. Miller added seven, including the game-winner. Dakota Kohler and Mendoza both had four points. Decker had the opening field goal to account for the remainder of Lorna Byrne’s scoring.
Unfortunately, the Lorna Byrne “B” squad dropped both their games last week, dropping a 26-17 decision to Shady Cove on Monday before a heart-breaking 32-31 loss to Valley on Wednesday. The Lady Viking “B”s finished 3-6 on the year.
Against Shady Cove, for the Viking B squad dropped behind 6-2 after the first quarter with Maddie Paul getting the only points for the Green and Gold. Paul scored all six of the Lady Vikings points in the second period as well, while the Wolverines doubled up to take an 18-8 lead at the half. Shady Cove outpaced Lorna Byrne 8-3 in the third, holding a 26-11 lead going into the final quarter. Although the Lady Vikings shut-out the Wolverines in the final frame, they were only able to score three buckets themselves and lost 26-17.
l’s eight first half points were good for Lorna Byrne’s scoring honors. Nya Barton added three, while Mac Latimer and Bailee Reed and Jocelyn Southammavong each had a field goal in the loss.
Against Valley, the Green and Gold rallied with a huge second half, but wound up one point shy at the end. Lorna Byrne had problems get untracked in the first half. The Lady Vikings trailed 12-4 after the opening quarter, only to score just a single basket in the second. The Vipers held a commanding 18-6 halftime lead. The rally began in the third quarter when the Lady Vikings outpaced Valley 15-8 to cut the lead to five, at 26-21 heading into the fourth.
Paul and Southammavong hit two buckets apiece and Mia Olsen got another one, but the Vipers managed to get six points in the quarter to send the Lady Vikings to a “close, but no cigar” 32-31 loss.
Latimer led the Green and Gold, tallying nine points. Barton added eight points while Paul and Southammavong pitched in six. Mia Olsen final quarter hoop accounted for the rest of the scoring for the Lady Vikings B squad.
The Lady Vikings were coached this year by Kelly Thomas and Serna Barton.