By Lukas Eggen Ely Times Staff Writer

The White Pine girls’ basketball team saw mixed results during its road trip last week. The Ladycats defeated West Wendover 56-22 before falling to Elko 56-42 and Spring Creek 61-43. But though White Pine dropped its games to Elko and Spring Creek, head coach Krystal Smith was pleased with something that had been missing in recent games for White Pine: Fast starts.

“We got out to a much better start,” Smith said. “Not necessarily against Wendover, but against Elko and Spring Creek we were able to get off to a decent start and not dig ourselves a huge hole in the first quarter.”

Smith was also pleased with the defensive effort the Ladycats showed against Elko and Spring Creek. But with the regular season winding down, White Pine is looking to find the one thing that could be the key to making a deep run in the postseason: Consistency.

“We’ve seen a lot of good things over the last couple weeks,” Smith said. “We need to work on just being consistent. I know that my team can be a strong team, they need to believe that they will be a strong team every time, instead of just sometimes.”

The Ladycats end its regular season against Lowry and Battle Mountain. And with several players who will be experiencing the postseason for the first time, Smith said she will be looking to upper classmen Bailey Moore, Haidn Windous and Amanda Allred to help teach the younger players to be ready. With a young team that has, at times, showed flashes of being able to play with anyone, ending the regular season on a high note is a big priority.

“We’re a team of being confident or lacking confidence,” Smith said. “It’s very evident. When we feel we can beat a team, we play very well. When we play tougher competition, I can see the doubt. Going out and beating Lincoln would be huge for us and Battle Mountain, I expect we’ll see them down the road in Divisions as well.”

The postseason will also be Smith’s first postseason as head coach for the varsity girls’ team. And while the postseason will present new challenges for the Ladycats, Smith said she believes this team has what it takes to get back to the State title game.

“We really take it day by day,” Smith said. “We have a pretty solid game plan going into games. Sometimes it works well, other times it doesn’t. We’re just confident and being patient with them.”

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