Bulldogs lose to Eagles in Saturday season opener

Bailey Freestone-Sports
Mackenzie Roberts goes up for a layup during the game against Pella Christian on Saturday, Nov. 19.

The Van Meter girls' basketball team opened their season with a Saturday game (Nov. 19) against Pella Christian. 

The Eagles took the lead in the first quarter straight from the beginning. With just three minutes left, the Eagles held the Bulldogs 14-6. The Bulldogs weren't ready to end the quarter without a fight, Bailey Junge made her only field goal of the night and brought the Bulldogs closer (14-8).

Brook Mitrisin then fouled Mackenzie Roberts for her second foul of the quarter. Mackenzie Roberts then shot two free throws, made both and the quarter ended 14-10.

The second quarter began with a quick foul on the Eagles. Morgan Fopma fouled Ellie Folkerts who made one-of-two of her free throws. By the time half of the had quarter passed, each team racked up two more fouls but no points.

Finally with only four minutes left in the half, MaryKate Bandstra was the one who scored a basket for the Eagles. The gap widened again, but not for too long.

Emily Roberts responded with a three pointer for the Bulldogs tightening the score to 16-14. After a single three point shot each for the Eagles and Bulldogs, the score was 19-17. The Bulldogs were determined to catch up after a field goal by Cailey Terpstra.

Emily Roberts and Kelsey Roberts had two more fouls for the Bulldogs which allowed Terpstra to make a free throw. Finally the Bulldogs were able to catch up with a three-point shot made by Kelsey Roberts, tying the score 22-22. After two free throws made by Folkerts and a basket scored by Bandstra, the Bulldogs and Eagles ended the half tied 24-24.

The third quarter started out going back and forth, tying the score with each trip. The Eagles had the first basket of the quarter, but they also had the first foul.

Isabella Baugh was the Eagle to do both. She fouled Mackenzie Roberts, who then made both of her free throws, tying the score 26-26.

Mitrisin was the next Eagle to score a basket and then foul, but this time no free throw were made. After the foul the Bulldogs got the ball and Mackenzie Roberts had a three-point shot go in that allowed them to take the lead for the first time this half.

It didn't take long and the Eagles were back up again 34-29, but senior C.J. Jones made her first three pointer for the night closing the gap to two points. With two minutes left, Mackenzie Roberts tied the score again with another basket at 34-34.

Bandstra then followed it up with four points of her own. Bandstra had one three pointer and then after being fouled by Kelsey Roberts made a single free throw. The quarter ended 38-34.

Again, the Eagles started the final quarter off with the first points, but they also started it off the first foul. Kaley Wilson fouled Chelsea Bright, who then made her only two points of the game.

Just like the third quarter, the game began to go back and forth and soon the Bulldogs were only trailing by one field goal (42-40). Jones made her final three pointer of the night and brought the Bulldogs up to 43-42.

Right after the shot, Emma Huisman made a basket while Jones was called for a foul. Huisman went to the line and made her free throw, which put the Eagles back ahead. The Bulldogs started feeling the clock tick down and began fouling as often as possible, in no time at all, two starters had four fouls and one had fouled out. The Eagles took advantage of the fouls and kept racking up points through free throws and ended the game 56-43.

"Obviously we have a lot of room for improvement, we struggled putting the ball in the basket, and shot very poorly from the field," said Coach Rick Roberts. "I think we will shoot better than that most nights. A lot of credit should go to Pella Christian's defense." 

The Bulldogs took on A-D-M on Tuesday night but the results and stats were unavailable before the DCN went to press.