The Craig County girls saw their basketball season come to an end with a 69-31 loss to the Maroon Tide girls in Galax last week. The game was the opening round of the Class 1, Region C basketball tournament.
Craig came in as decided underdogs in the game against the 20-3 Tide, but the Rockets gave it their all and represented the county well. The loss ended the Rockets’ season at 8-15 overall.
“I thought we played better against Galax than we did in our games in the Pioneer tournament,” said Craig coach Randy Hale. “Overall, we played much better.”
Senior Tierrney Zysk scored 20 of her team’s 31 points and was named second team All-Region after garnering first team All-Pioneer honors. Kaylee Pauley, a junior, was a second team All-District selection.
Zysk also led the team with nine rebounds. Autumn Hutchison, a freshman, had seven rebounds and four points for the Rockets.
Galax and Parry McCluer played in the region final on Friday and Pioneer champ Parry McCluer won that game, 59-47. The Blues didn’t come close to losing a game in the district.
“When they only lost to Parry McCluer by 12 points, that made me feel pretty good about our team,” said Hale. “We lost by 30-some but we missed a lot of shots we could have made.”
Hale was pleased with the progress the girls made during the season.
“I would liked to have had more wins, but I thought we had a real good season,” he said. “I was pleased with how our young girls improved. Jaci(McAlwee) and Autumn(Hutchison) really improved as the season went along. They both had the flu for our last games, and it’s tough to play when you’re sick.”
Craig will lose two seniors, Zysk and Taylor Sloss. Those are two good ones.
“We’re losing about 25 points and close to 20 rebounds a game,” said Hale. “But I think we can make that up with the younger girls next year. We need to find a point guard and we’ll have Kaylee at her more natural shooting guard position next year.”
Hale had fun in his first year back on the bench and he’s hoping to be the coach for years to come.
“I told Carrie(athletic coordinator Hutton) I’d love to be back,” he said. “It was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed the girls. It was a good group.”