Girls basketball: Burke’s buzzer-beater lifts Sweet Home against visiting Hidden Valley

Senior guard Brooke Burke hit a game-winning buzzer-beating three pointer to give her team the victory against Hidden Valley and the Huskies split a pair of games against Molalla and Phoenix last week as Sweet Home girls basketball moved to 3-2 on the season.

The week started out exceptionally poor for the Huskies (ranked No. 14), as they only managed to score six points at home on Dec. 6 on the way to getting trounced 55-6 by No. 2-ranked Molalla (2-1).

“That was a rough game for us,” Head Coach Michelle Knight said. “I don’t know what happened. Molalla was very good. It’s one of those films you burn. It didn’t seem like anything was going our way that night.”

Sweet Home shot 4.7% from the field, while Molalla shot 35%. The Huskies turned the ball over 25 times while only forcing six. Burke led the team in scoring with five points on 2-19 shooting.

Sophomore Kaylynn Mamac scored the sole other point for the Huskies on a free throw, going 0-6 from the field on the day. The sophomore led all Sweet Home players with nine rebounds.

But it was all smiles after the next game for the Huskies, which Burke won in dramatic fashion against Hidden Valley (3-2, unranked) by banking in a long three-pointer at the buzzer off of a side out-of-bounds play, allowing Sweet Home to prevail 41-38.

“It was a much better game for us,” Knight said. “We knew that they were going to be strong. So we made some adjustments at practice and the girls came out determined. That was a fun game to win.

“We put in a full court press that was pretty effective,” the coach continued.

“We have a new group this year that’s quicker. We don’t have the height we had, so we knew we had to make some adjustments with using our quickness. Defensively, we played a much better game.”

That Husky defense was able to help Sweet Home win the turnover battle 17-15 against the Mustangs. Sweet Home also outshot Hidden Valley from the field 33.3% to 27.3%.

Burke scored 32 points on 12-27 shooting, going 5-10 from beyond the arc. She also led the team with 11 rebounds. Mamac scored seven points on 3-7 shooting, and sophomore Jocelyn Fairchild scored two points on 1-2 shooting.

The next day, in another home game, Sweet Home beat Phoenix (3-2, no. 15) 25-23. Senior Meeja Bitter hit a three pointer late in the game to give her team the lead, and Mamac stole the ball as the clock expired to clinch the victory.

“It wasn’t our best game,” Knight said of the effort. “We did win, but we didn’t have our best performance that day. We have been struggling with some illness and kids have been missing, and back to back games are tough.”

Sweet Home shot 31% from the field to Phoenix’s 18.4%. But the Huskies lost the turnover battle 26-19.

Bitter led the team in scoring with 10 points on 3-11 shooting. Burke scored eight on 3-9 shooting. Mamac scored four points on 2-7 shooting, leading the team with nine rebounds.

This week the Huskies travel to Estacada (1-1, no. 13) for a 5:30 p.m. game on Friday, Dec. 16.

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