Platte County girls hang with Lafayette late, can't dig out of early hole

For the middle two quarters, Platte County dangerously hung with a former district rival Friday, Dec. 9.

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo Platte County senior guard Ava White, left, passes the ball with senior Liz Peterson following close behind during a game against St. Joseph Lafayette on Friday, Dec. 9 at Platte County High School.

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo
Platte County senior guard Ava White, left, passes the ball with senior Liz Peterson following close behind during a game against St. Joseph Lafayette on Friday, Dec. 9 at Platte County High School.

Unfortunately, St. Joseph Lafayette hit a barrage of early shots, including four 3-pointers in the first quarter, to build a big lead, which remained intact until the waning minutes at Platte County High School. The Pirates received a late boost from its bench in a 55-39 loss but were never really in the matchup after falling behind 22-2 in the first 8 minutes.

Janessa Barmann, Stephanie Carroll and Sarah Bell had three points each in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter.

“Off the bench, we got some good minutes for some girls who are playing good (junior varsity) basketball,” Platte County coach Chris Stubbs said. “We still play a lot of sophomores. We’re playing a ton of sophomores. The more minutes they can get on varsity and step up and play hard is just going to make us better in the future.”

Platte County played its sixth game in a span of 12 days, three days ahead of another back-to-back against St. Joseph Central and Ruskin.

Lafayette took advantage of a lethargic start with three 3-pointers in the first 3:14. The Fighting Irish were up 13-0 when Rockey Chambers hit a pair of free throws for Platte County, which then ceded a 9-0 run to close the first quarter.

In all, Lafayette hit four 3-pointers —  two for senior guard Maddie Book, one for senior center Ashlyn Dotson and one for senior guard Amber Kneale. The Irish closed with back-to-back buckets in the final minute, including Book with the fourth 3-pointer.

“In that first quarter, they just rolled us,” Stubbs said. “I think they were like 6-for-8 on their first eight shots or something, just came out on fire. I’m not making excuses for the girls, but for some of them, this is literally their eighth game in two weeks. This is the third game this week.

“We had heavy legs. We didn’t have the energy we normally do.”

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo Platte County junior guard Rockey Chambers goes up for a reverse layup in the second half vs. Lafayette.

ROSS MARTIN/Citizen photo
Platte County junior guard Rockey Chambers goes up for a reverse layup in the second half vs. Lafayette.

Chambers hit Platte County’s first shot from the floor 43 seconds into the second quarter. She ended up with six of her team-high 10 points in the first half, helping the Pirates close to within 30-15 at the break.

Lafayette’s lead went back to 20 at the end of the third quarter, and Stubbs opted to go to the bench with nearly half the fourth quarter left.

Bell knocked down a 3-pointer, just the second for Platte County in the game and third in a span of three tough-shooting nights, while Barmann had a three-point play. Carroll hit a jumper and split a pair of free throws.

Ava White, a senior guard, ended up with six points, while Barmann had five.

“We’re not exactly where we want to be. Offensively, we get really stagnant,” Stubbs said. “They listened and did what they could.”

Lafayette shot 45.3 percent from the field but didn’t have another 3-pointer after the first quarter. Book had 12 of her game-high 16 in the first quarter, while Dotson finished with 13 points.

Platte County shot 13 of 15 on free throws, a percentage which helped the Pirates keep the Irish’s lead from ballooning.

St. Joseph Central 56, Platte County 40

The Pirates’ dropped a second straight in a road game Monday, Dec. 12 in St. Joseph, Mo.

With 22 turnovers total plaguing Platte County, Central took a 15-2 lead after the first quarter in a start reminiscent of the Pirates’ loss to Lafayette three days earlier. Platte County did hit three 3-pointers after struggling from the outside the previous week, but Chambers’ 10 points led the way for the offense.

Hannah Valentine and Jaycie Stubbs, a pair of sophomores, finished with eight and seven points, respectively, for Platte County — 4-4 overall entering a Tuesday, Dec. 13 matchup with Pleasant Hill (result not available at The Citizen’s deadline).

Platte County 67, Fort Osage 34

The Pirates dominated a nonconference matchup Thursday, Dec. 8 in Independence, Mo., allowing 21 of the 34 points in the second quarter.

Fort Osage went scoreless in the fourth quarter, collapsing after taking a 35-32 lead into halftime. Jaycie Stubbs scored 17 points, including the only 3-pointer for the suddenly cold shooting Pirates, to go with four steals. She had nine of their 15 in the second quarter when the Indians made their run.

Stubbs (five points) and Liz Peterson (four of her 12 points) led a third quarter outburst that buried Fort Osage. Peterson just missed a double-double with nine rebounds, six on the offensive end to help the Pirates to 17 second-chance points.

Taylor Farr, a sophomore guard, made her first career start and scored nine points

North Kansas City 52, Platte County 33

The Pirates bolted to a lead in the first quarter and then wilted over the next 24 minutes.

North Kansas City scored in double figures each of the next three quarters, while holding Platte County to just 19 points total. The Pirates were up 14-8 after the first quarter but scored just 12 points total in the next two quarters.

Chambers scored 12 points for Platte County to go with four assists. The Pirates shots 29.6 percent from the field, 0-for-10 on 3-pointers.