The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Sports

December 20, 2013

EHS cagers look to bounce back

ENID, Okla. — For the first time in the 2013-14 season, the Enid Pacers are looking to bounce back from a loss.

In what arguably was the best measuring stick for the 16th-ranked Pacers so far — playing their fourth game against ranked competition, but their first against a 6A team in No. 17 Yukon — they didn’t quite stack up as well as they hoped.  

“They handled it well,” said Pacers coach Robb Mills of the team’s 57-39 loss to Yukon. “There wasn’t a lot of negative talk between the girls. I do know they were disappointed, but that’s a good thing.”

“It was a hard game,” said sophomore and leading scorer Andi Pierce, who had 11 points in the loss. “But we’ve got to learn to face adversity.”

That chance comes tonight in a 7 p.m. homecoming matchup with Lawton Eisenhower.

“They’re very good,” Mills said. “They’re big … Their size is what they’re gonna try to use as an advantage against us.”

The Pacers split two games with Eisenhower last season, taking the first in the series that was separated by a total of six points.

So far in 2013-14, the Pacers have relied on Pierce, who has avoided any sophomore slump after earning a starting role as a freshman. She was a pleasant surprise as a frosh, contributing almost eight points per game on average for the Pacers last season.

As a sophomore, and with Enid in need of a regular scorer without 2012-13 senior Courtney Chelf’s 18 points a night, Pierce has nearly doubled her output, posting a team-high 14.4 points per game.

“There’s not really much of a difference,” Pierce said of her sophomore experience. “Just play ball.”

She likely will have the ball more tonight, with secondary ball handler and backup guard Kylee Vestal expected to miss the game with a knee injury.

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