The loss, according to head coach Larrell Lewis, came as a result of fatigue and a valuable player being out.
“We played OK considering Jenny [Vernet] was hurt. Coming off the region losses we were tired. Their bodies were just tired and they had never been in this place before,” said Lewis.
With Vernet out of the game, Lewis said her team was outsized. Along with that setback was the matter of the Salem defense.
“Trying to break their press killed us,” said Lewis.
Despite the loss, Lewis said her girls started off the game very well and played with all their hearts. The key scorers for the night were Keshia Shy and Kim Person.
Now that the season is over, Lewis has already begun to look toward next season and realize the good that came from this one.
“It’s good that these girls were able to get that experience. They’ve set records and done things no other team has done. They’ve developed a system and a structure for the next season,” Lewis said.
With three seniors on the roster this year and only two of them playing throughout the season due to an early injury, Lewis said she won’t lose many players, making it better for the team next season as they have now developed good chemistry.
Lewis said she made sure to tell her seniors how much they contributed to the success of the team this season and how much they improved over the two years she had to coach them.
Lewis said the offseason training will begin at the end of May or beginning of June, after school ends.
The biggest focus for the team will be defense, according to Lewis, as she said she wants her team to be able to press other teams harder since they won’t have the size they had this season.
Overall, Lewis said she is proud of her girls and their accomplishments this season as they finished 20-7, compared to last season’s 10-13 finish.
“We had a great season. If we would have stayed healthy we could have done more…I was blessed to be given 12 great girls to make my job easier,” said Lewis.