KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Park Hill South earned an upset win against Fort Osage during their season opener in late November.The second matchup didn’t turn out the same. Fort Osage scored a 51-39 in the championship game of the Winnetonka Invitational’s Gold Division on Dec. 5 at Winnetonka High School.
“We didn’t shoot very well,” Park Hill South coach Jenny Orlowski said. “We couldn’t hit anything from the outside. We kind of bank on having some 3-pointers. We had a hard time finding the basket. I figured they would play a little man (defense) after the first quarter. I guess you might as well sit back in the zone if your opponent is not hitting any shots, which we weren’t.”
Park Hill South (3-1) scored just one point in the third quarter after leading by as many as five in the first quarter. Panthers senior guard Erica Timmerman hit two of the Panthers’ three 3-pointers in the opening quarter to take the game from a 4-4 stalemate to an eventual 13-8 lead for Park Hill South.
After the first quarter, Park Hill scored just four points in the second and trailed 26-17 at the break before the disastrous third quarter.
“I told the kids at half that they got in their heads,” Orlowski said. “We lost our confidence, and we needed to come back. Then we came out and played a pretty bad third quarter.”
Fort Osage went on a 19-1 run starting with a bucket from junior Ashton Gray. Indians junior forwards Paige Bunn and Amellia Tinoco combined to score 32 points, including a game-high 18 for Bunn. The bruising inside presence made all to aware for Orlowski when the outside shots stopped falling.
“It was David and Goliath,” Orlowski said. “It’s going to be like that all year. I have basically three posts — who aren’t very big. They work so hard inside. We do the best we can. Size is a problem for us this year. We’re constantly thinking about how to overcome that size differential because it’s not going to change this year.”
Park Hill South enior guard Mackenzie Stout finished with a team-high 12 points. Timmerman added eight, missing all five of her remaining 3-point attempts after starting 2-for-2, and senior forward Sydney Baska corralled 11 rebounds in the loss but did not score.
North Kansas City girls 32, Park Hill 26
The Trojans could not overcome a slow start in the Winnetonka Invitational Cardinal Division third-place game. They scored scored just eight points before halftime — three in the second quarter and went into halftime down 23-8.
Park Hill’s defensive adjustments kept the Hornets off the scoreboard until 1 minute, 45 seconds remained in the third quarter, helping the Trojans pull within 25-18 entering the final 8 minutes.
“I think we just came out and did a better job of executing the game plan,” Park Hill coach Aaron Neeser said. “We got the ball inside. They played harder on defense, paid a little more attention to details. We had a little bit more success. We dug ourselves such a big hole in the first half we weren’t able to get ourselves out of it.”
Early turnovers, including five in the first half for Nevada signee Riana Everidge, plagued Park Hill. Everidge the senior provided a spark late with four of her six points.
Everidge’s layup with 2:33 remaining cut the deficit to 27-23, but Park Hill (2-2) would get no closer.
Pembroke Hill 60, Platte County 58, 2OT
A late travelling call gave the Pirates an opportunity in the consolation championship of the Winnetonka Invitational Gold Division bracket. A foul call on the ensuing possession as the buzzer sounded at the end of the second extra period gave them a final opportunity to force another overtime.
Platte County junior Lindsey Bogart missed the first free throw and then missed the second on purpose trying to create a putback opportunity after officials put 1 second back on the clock following the foul.
Bogart, and juniors Madysen Fine and Rachel Holden tied for the team lead with 14 points apiece. Fine hit a 3-pointer at the regulation buzzer to force the first overtime, and the teams were tied again at 52 after the first overtime.
“We had our chances in both overtimes but just came up short in the end,” Platte County coach Chris Stubbs said.
Platte County dropped to 1-3 on the season entering a Tuesday, Dec. 9 matchup with North Kansas City. The result wasn’t available at The Citizen’s deadline. The Pirates host Park Hill South on Thursday, Dec. 11.