Eagles place seventh with win over Lady Bulldogs

By: Matt Long
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After Swan Wainwright saw his team place seventh in the Oak Ridge Toss-Up Tournament last week, the coach of Vista del Lago’s varsity girls’ basketball team wants his team to play smarter and with more confidence. The team dropped games against Oak Ridge and Rocklin before beating Folsom to conclude the tournament on Thursday, as the Eagles record is 7-4 heading into this week’s West Coast Jamboree Tournament in the Bay Area. Wainwright was disappointed that his team lost so badly to the Lady Trojans, 68-39, and then to Rocklin, 57-54. He felt his team should have defeated the Thunder and certainly played the Lady Trojans much tougher. “It must be a mental thing with Oak Ridge because I believe we can compete with them,” Wainwright said. “We fell behind 10-0 in the first two minutes and from there we were chasing and you can’t beat a team like that when you’re chasing them all game. “We’ve got to play smarter and have mental toughness and a positive mental attitude. That’s the foundation that I’m trying to teach these girls. I don’t have a problem when we lose to a better team, but at least compete and let them know they were in a game.” Amara Wainwright led the Eagles with 16 points against Oak Ridge, while Brittany Stegall, Christina Guidry and Becca Stephens all scored six on a poor shooting night for the team. In the first half alone, the Eagles made only six-of-22 free throws. Wainwright scored 22 in the 57-54 loss to Rocklin on Wednesday, while Stephens added 16. The Eagles ended the two-game slide with a 52-40 win over Folsom on Thursday. Vista never trailed in the game and led by 10 to 12 points most of the game, keeping Folsom at bay with a decent press and solid rebounding. Folsom cut the lead to six twice midway through the fourth quarter on three-pointers by Courtney Wolking, but couldn’t get any closer. On both occasions, Vista’s Christina Guidry followed with buckets coming after offensive rebounds to put an end to Folsom’s brief runs. Kendall Moore and Stephens scored 14 points each for the Eagles, as Moore got to a lot of loose balls and earned hustle points, while Stephens was a rock on defense, blocking at least half a dozen shots. Guidry also had a strong game with eight points, while Wainwright finished with seven points, five coming in the fourth quarter. Wainwright was Vista’s lone all-tournament selection. “It was big to win this game because we came into it with a two-game losing streak,” Wainwright said. “Also, we’re playing against a team that’s in our backyard and we want to be the top dog in Folsom. “We played well defensively, at times, and did better from the free throw line and also got out and ran and attacked. It was also good that Kendall and Becca stepped up. I’m always telling them that our offense is open for anyone to shoot and that we’re always looking for players to step up.”