By Mike Maltais
The Liberty Bell High School varsity girls’ basketball team closed its season with a spirited 58-30 loss to the league-leading Oroville Hornets during Senior Night last Friday.
The Lady Lions’ lone graduating senior, Julie McMillan, was honored along with her parents by the hometown crowd, coaches and teammates prior to the start of the game.
The outside shooting of freshman guard Lauren Fitzmaurice, with 18 points, kept Liberty Bell in the game as the 9-1 Hornets gradually increased their lead from five points in the first quarter to 10 points by halftime.
Injuries to starters Sarina Williams and Monica Chavey compelled coach Deed Fink to recruit eighth graders from the junior varsity squad to give the team sufficient players for substitutions. Of those, Katie Labanauskas and Lauren Ochoa contributed to the team scoring with four and two points respectively.
Erin Knight with three points, Lily Stoothoff with two and Mahayla Phillips with one rounded out the Lady Lions’ scoring.
In the absence of Williams, a junior, and sophomore Chavey, the varsity roster ended the season with one senior, one junior and six freshmen. The Lady Lions were 1-10 in league play and 2-17 overall. Their wins were over Riverside Christian, 43-33, and Columbia Basin Secondary School, 37-26.