Miners girls basketball searches for success in tough season
The Park City High School varsity girls basketball team is having a tough season. So far, the team has not yet won a game. With five games left in the season, players and coach Sam White are hoping that the team’s hard work will start paying off.
“We’re still pretty young, but we’re hoping to bring some new talent out, work hard and get a win,” senior Ruthie Cook said during practice on Wednesday. “Yesterday (during a game against Ogden), we weren’t playing as the team that we want to be. I think yesterday we were playing more of a selfish game. I think we just need to focus on getting the ball to people in places where they can be successful, and work together better.”
Junior Courtney Kaufman said she agreed with Cook, saying the team’s energy is high and positive, but it needs to do a better job distributing the ball.
“When we get kind of in a troubled situation, we just have to learn to lean on each other a little bit more,” she said. “I think we all need to work together in those situations and realize not one person is the hero — we all have to do it together. So when we are down a few baskets, we have to pass it even more than we would if we were up 20, 30 points.”
So far, the Miners’ closest game has been against Hunter, which won by 10.
White agrees with his players that they need to distribute the ball, but said selfishness wasn’t the issue.
“Our tendency is to only look right and only drive right,” he said. “That makes sense because it’s their dominant hand, but they are missing the skip passes to their left. If we just do one more pass to the left, we have a wide open shot or a wide open drive. So I think it’s just more, I don’t think they’ve had the vision to see it.”
Kaufman said that, though the team isn’t winning, it is still one of the largest basketball teams she has seen at PCHS, which she said bodes well for the future, and makes the present more fun.
“Even if we are having a little bit of trouble right now, we’re always there for each other,” she said. “And having the team (be there for each other) throughout school has been great, and I think we encourage that with the younger girls.”
White said the team has had to alter its goal over the season as its situation changed.
“Although we’ve gotten better and we’ve done a lot of things a lot better than expected, in other ways I think we have not met our expectations, which has been frustrating for the girls and me,” he said. “So we’ve changed some expectations and we’re focusing on getting better and moving in the right direction.”
He sees consistency as the team’s Achilles heel, and said the team sometimes plays good offense or great defense, but seldom puts both together.
“Then we have had offensive struggles,” he said. “In the beginning of the season we were scoring in the 40s and 50s easily, but recently we’ve been battling just to get 25 points on the board.”
Looking over the rest of the season, Ogden and Ben Lomond are the most likely opportunities for the team to earn a win. They will play Ben Lomond in the last game of the season on Feb. 15. It will also be senior night.
“I think, especially that game, it would be awesome,” Kaufman said. “We’re really going to work hard to get the win that night for our seniors, and it’s our last game of the season, so having the crowd at home to cheer us on would be awesome.”
Park City Mountain Resort is scheduled to start limited summer operations on Saturday, including the operation of PayDay lift for hikers and bikers.