Estancia High School’s girls basketball team had an opportunity to pick up a win Feb. 10 but the Lady Bears stalled in the third quarter, didn’t get a break from the officials in the final seconds, and wound up losing 28-26 to the visiting Mesa Vista Lady Trojans.
“We put ourselves in that situation and we didn’t finish the way we need to and that’s on us,” Estancia head coach J.C. Batts said.
After falling behind in the second half, Estancia (8-13, 2-2) pulled within 2 points in the final minute but missed an opportunity to tie the score with under 20 seconds to play.
Jenna Fastnacht attempted a jumper that would’ve tied the game with 18 seconds left but it didn’t fall.
“It was frustrating, I thought it was going in,” Fastnacht said. “I was really hoping I’d hit it.”
A few seconds later, the Lady Bears got the short end of the stick from the officials.
With 13.3 seconds remaining in the game, the Lady Bears inbounded the ball but Mesa Vista snatched it away and held on to it in the back court as the clock ran out.
“They stole it on the inbound and didn’t get a 10 second count, we should’ve had about three seconds left in the game,” Batts said. “You have 10 seconds to get it to the front court.”
The low-scoring contest saw several lead changes as Mesa Vista (11-11, 2-4) started the game with a 5-0 run.
Samantha Hernandez’ consecutive layups capped a 6-0 Estancia response at the end of the first quarter to push the Lady Bears ahead 6-5. She scored a game-high 11 points.
Daniella Ponce opened the second quarter with a layup and Fastnacht sank a mid-range jumper midway through the period to lift the Lady Bears to a 10-5 advantage.
After Mesta Vista regained a 1-point lead late in the second, Aliyah Padilla’s layup with 20 seconds left gave the Lady Bears a 12-11 lead at halftime.
Hernandez opened the third quarter with a short jump shot to expand Estancia’s lead to 14-11.
Mesa Vista answered with a 6-0 spurt and took the lead for good with 2:20 left in the quarter.
“The third quarter’s what hurt us,” Batts said.
Mesa Vista increased its lead to 26-20 with 5:30 left in the game and was up 28-23 with 1:10 left.
Hernandez was fouled making a layup and sank the subsequent plus-one free throw to make it 28-26 with 41 seconds to go.
Olivia Anaya chipped in 6 points for Estancia and Fastnacht added 4.