Playing without injured point guard Camille Roberts, the Turlock High girls basketball team had a straightforward approach in Tuesday night’s Central California Conference opener against Buhach Colony: Just squeeze by the Thunder.
Judging by the final score, the Bulldogs did more than just that.
Thanks to a timely third-quarter run, Turlock pulled off a 46-29 thumping over the Thunder at Turlock High’s Bulldog Arena. It gave the Bulldogs (7-4, 1-0 CCC) the confidence they needed before facing Merced High on Thursday night.
By then, coach Salinda Mabie hopes to return Roberts, the high-scoring guard who has back problems after taking a bad fall in the finale of last week’s West Coast Jamboree.
“We said, ‘Hopefully we’ll squeeze by Buhach and have her ready for Merced,’” Mabie said about Roberts. “It’s tough, because we know everyone’s chasing us and everyone has improved. It was hard to make that call (to sit out Roberts), but I knew we had enough people that could step up.”
Kayla Schumann and Lindy Avila filled in for Roberts and combined for 24 points, with Schumann scoring 17 of them. Teammate Sarah McMullen had a solid inside game and finished with nine points. The trio, along with their other teammates, managed to stay cool in the third quarter, when Buhach Colony cut a double-digit lead to 22-19.
But then, the Bulldogs issued a 13-1 run to end the period.
“I knew were going to keep playing hard,” Schumann said. “We always play hard.”
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