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Vista falls to Cougars, 60-17

By: Brett Ransford/Telegraph Correspondent
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League play is off and running for area high school basketball teams and in Folsom on Wednesday night, the Vista del Lago girls’ squad was nearly run out of their own gym. The Lady Eagles (0-1 Sierra Valley Conference, 3-11 overall) suffered a 60-17 drubbing to visiting rival El Dorado in both teams’ first league game. With the loss Vista tied its lowest scoring effort this season, matching a 61-17 drop to Antelope in preseason. Coach Swan Wainwright said the game plan going in was to take care of the ball, not spot El Dorado points, finish on layups and make free throws. But after one quarter El Dorado led Vista by an 18-2 margin. It was the Eagles’ worst offensive quarter, but through six minutes of the second they outscored El Dorado 7-6. Unfortunately, the bright spots were few and far between after that. Those last two minutes returned on the visitors’ terms. Vista didn’t score in the final two minutes and went to halftime trailing 33-9 on back of a two-minute period in which El Dorado completed a 9-0 run. The Eagles did, however, accomplish some game plans. Freshman Caprina Pipion went 2-for-2 at the line and the only points of the first quarter. As they struggled to get the ball above half court, free throws were the main source of points in the first half. “We just started unraveling and couldn’t really get into a rhythm,” said Wainwright. “The thing with us, when we start getting down then mentally they just start collapsing.” There were highlights in Vista’s play. Junior guard Ezenia Coleman returned to the lineup after missing the Toss-Up tournament on vacation. Coleman was largely responsible for the second quarter run and also began the third quarter by hitting a three-pointer. She added defensive strength and opened up the offense, but her team was all but done down 55-14 to start the fourth. Coleman’s return performance led her team with seven points, three rebounds and a steal. Pipion put in five points, more than 10 rebounds and two steals. Elizabeth Freeze had three points and four rebounds. Off to a rocky start, the Eagles’ schedule doesn’t get any easier against Sheldon (10-4) on Friday. “I know without a doubt that El Dorado is not 40 points better than us. We have to come out hard so we have a chance at changing some deciding factors at the end of the game,” said Wainwright. The loss was Vista’s fifth in a row since beating Mesa Verde 40-30 in the Coach G Memorial tournament. It tied a five-game slide which was ended with the same win.