North Pulaski Coach Stacy Dalmut is somewhat dumbfounded.
What she doesn’t understand is how the Lady Falcons (4-12, 1-6 5A-Central) turned in a 20-point victory over Sylvan Hills last Friday and then lost to Little McClellan, 45-36, after leading most of the game.
The McClellan loss was painful. North Pulaski led by as many as six points throughout the contest. However, that lead dwindled to 33-31 going into the fourth quarter. Then the bottom fell out as the Lady Falcons did not score another basket until two seconds left in the contest on Ilycia Carter’s trey. Meanwhile, the Lady Lions outscored North Pulaski, 14-3.
“A lot of it had to do with some things in practice and people not putting their all out there,” Dalmut said. “I thought I put an end to the practice stuff yesterday (Monday). Maybe I shouldn’t have done it before a conference game.”
During the fourth period, the Lady Falcons missed 10 shots with some of those easy layups or putbacks. They also committed eight turnovers and could never get into a flow.
“Turnovers have been our problem lately,” Dalmut said. “We are careless and don’t see the three people (opponents) where we want to make a pass. We’ll work on that in practice.”
Raigen Thomas led North Pulaski with 12 points, and Carter added 10. Against Sylvan Hills, freshman Allison piled up 20 points but just had two in the McClellan contest. Thomas contributed 12 points, and sophomore Kiarra Evans finished with 11. Carter and senior Kristin Munn chipped in eight points each.
Dalmut wished the Lady Falcons played the way they did against Sylvan Hills. She said everything in that contest went well. They made their free throws, shot 65 percent from the field and out-rebounded Sylvan Hills.
“We were doing what we are supposed to do,” she said. “Everything fell together.”
The hope is North Pulaski can bounce back at West Helena tomorrow. That is a winnable game for the Lady Falcons, and if they are to make their goal of making the state tournament, they need to get busy.
“There is a race for the fourth spot,” Dalmut said. “It’s all about points, and you need to win by six.”
First, though, the Lady Falcons need to win the games they can and sneak in one or two other victories.