The flu bug bit the Smoky Valley girls, as head coach Bill Nelson had to face an undefeated Sterling team with an even younger team than he normally would have.
The Vikings were down six players during Friday night’s 69-52 loss to the Black Bears, but junior Hannah McBride single-handidly kept the Vikings in the ball game, dropping 22 points. It was a remarkable performance considering she had been suffering from flu-like symptoms herself 24 hours prior.
“It changed our substitution patterns a little bit,” Nelson said of the depletion of his roster. “We had to play some young kids, but I thought Kelsie Anderson, a freshman, played very well tonight.”
Sterling came in at 5-0 on the season and boasting a number of weapons, but the spunky Vikings kept the game close for the first quarter, trailing only 16-10.
The Black Bears exploded for 22 points in the second quarter, however, thanks in part to sophomore Chelsey Riffel.
Smoky Valley (1-4) would trail 61-35 after the third quarter, but would fight their way back in the fourth, holding the Black Bears to only eight points while scoring 17 themselves in the period.
McBride led all scorers with her 22 points. Kylah Comley had 17 points for Sterling (6-0), while Riffel added 16 and Andi Dowell had 10 for the Black Bears.
The Vikings have one more game before the holiday break, a Tuesday evening road game against Hillsboro. The Trojans were a 57-46 winner over Lyons on Friday.
Smoky Valley — McBride 8 3-4 22; Deterding 1 0-0 2; Klotzbach 1 2-4 4; Denk 1 0-0 2; Anderson 3 0-0 6; Norberg 5 0-0 10.
Sterling — Comley 7 2-3 17; Nuest 3 0-0 8; Lanbert 3 0-4 8; Dowell, A. 4 2-2 10; Dowell, D. 1 2-4 4; Riffel 6 4-4 16; Schweizer 3 0-0 6.