CLAYTON -- The Cloverdale girls' basketball squad couldn't overcome a sub par first half and fell to the Cascade Cadets 59-56 Friday on the road.
"We didn't shoot the ball particularly good," CHS head coach Bruce Cook said.
Cloverdale found itself trailing during the first quarter after falling behind early. The Clovers are known for the intensity they bring to the court but on Friday the squad that took the court was flat and looked nothing like a 10-3 team. They spend most of the first half on their heels, hoping for a break.
Ashley Koosman came out strong and paced the Clovers in the first quarter with seven points, but a Cascade bucket with 10 second left put the Cadets up 10-8 after one. Cloverdale was 0-7 from three-point territory in the first quarter and it was a sign of things to come.
The Clovers entered the half down 25-17.
The first half went by without incident as only seven total fouls were called but in the second half the whistles were working overtime.
Returning from the break, the Clovers began to dig their way back into the game. The energy and aggressiveness that was nowhere to be found in the first half resurfaced in the second. Cook pointed out that they began to run a man-to-man offense against a zone defense to get the offense in motion.
The Clovers closed the gap to six points with under a minute remaining when Kayla Shepherd was whistled for an intentional foul. The Cadets converted at the free throw line. Cascade scored four seconds later and was given another trip to the charity stripe when Cook was called for a technical foul. After converting the Cadets held to a 44-31 advantage entering the final quarter.
It was Cloverdale's final opportunity to show the grit that they've exhibited during the season and they didn't disappoint.
Koosman continued to attack the lane and earn trips to the line. She scored 12 points in the fourth to lead the charge.
Cloverdale began to chip away at the Cadet lead but Allie Franklin was cited for an inexplicable intentional foul at the 5:05 mark to hinder their progress. Both squads were cited for 26 fouls in the second half.
The Clovers drew on their defense to get them into the game as time ticked away. With 1:09 remaining, they began pressuring Cascade and cut the Cadet lead to only three at 56-53 with 25 second to go. Cascade would knock down its foul shots as the game expired to take the win.
"I thought they played smart at time but it's one of those things where we couldn't get the outside shot to fall and when that happens to us we're in trouble," Cook said.
The Clovers (10-4, 2-1 WCC) will travel to South Vermillion at 11:30 a.m. today.
Cloverdale 8 9 14 25 -- 56
Cascade 10 15 19 15 -- 59
Cloverdale -- Koosman 26, Cheatham 17, Shepherd 6, McCammon 5, Haltom 2. Totals 17-55 FG 20-31 FT 56 TP.
Cascade -- English 12, Sallee 11, Morgan 10, Stewart 9, Estes 8, Suter 6, Arnold 3. Totals: 18-46 FG 21-29 FT 59 TP.
3pt. FG -- CHS 2 (Shepherd 2), Cascade 2 (Stewart, Sallee).
Next game -- The Clovers (10-4, 2-1 WCC) will travel to South Vermillion at 11:30 a.m. today.