Thompson Falls girls dump Mission, fall to Eureka

by CHUCK BANDEL
Valley press | January 13, 2021 12:00 AM

Last week was a bag of mixed results for the Thompson Falls Lady Hawks basketball team.

They opened the week with a convincing home win over Mission, then lost a heart-breaker at home versus Eureka in a game they almost rallied to win.

The Lady Hawks capped off their week of play in a hard-fought game against the Lady Lions from Eureka, falling 49-42 in a game in which they nearly erased a 14-point deficit by the end of three quarters of play.

With two of their key inside players hampered by foul trouble before the end of the first half, Thompson Falls initially took a slim 8-5 lead after the first quarter. They held an 8-2 advantage in the opening eight minutes of play, only to see that margin narrowed via a last second three-pointer by Eureka’s Kyla Bohne.

That play seemed to ignite the Lady Lions, who took advantage of three early fouls on Thompson Falls standout Jody Detlaff who was forced to the sideline.

Detlaff was joined on the bench for most of the second quarter by senior post Megan Baxter, who likewise was whistled for three violations.

Eureka took the lead midway through the second quarter of play and never trailed from that point on, despite several Thompson Falls rallies.

By halftime the Lady Lions were ahead 27-22, thanks in large part to the 3-point shooting of senior forward Katie Schmidt, who scored a game-high 21 points on the night, many of which came from behind the arc.

The foul-filled game, which eventually led to the ejection of a Thompson Falls fan for complaining about the officiating, continued in the third quarter when both Detlaff and Baxter were assessed their fourth fouls.

By the end of the third quarter, with Eureka’s defense stifling numerous Lady Hawk possessions, the Lady Lions’ lead had grown to 43-29.

With Baxter and Detlaff back in the lineup for the fourth quarter of play, Thompson Falls began whittling away at the Eureka lead, which they shrunk to six points, 46-40, with just over a minute to play.

The Lady Hawks ran out of time as the final buzzer sounded.

The loss dropped Thompson Falls to 2-1 on the year. Faith Frields scored nine points to lead the Lady Hawks.

Two nights earlier on their home court, the Lady Hawks also led after a hard fought first quarter, 10-9. But on Thursday night, they turned on the afterburners in the second quarter, racing to a 19-6 edge for the period, leaving them with a 29-15 halftime lead.

They continued to build on that lead in the third quarter, when they outscored Mission 24-14 for a 53-29 lead.

Baxter scored a team-leading 21 points for the Lady Hawks, while Detlaff pitched in 14. Ellie Pardee also scored in double figures, contributing 11 points.

The Lady Hawks travel to Bigfork this Thursday before returning home Saturday evening to take on Deer Lodge.