The Carlsbad Cavegirls shot 54 percent Tuesday night.
Unfortunately for them, it didn’t do much good.
The Cavegirls went 13-for-24 from the field but were harassed into 33 turnovers in a 57-42 loss to Clovis High at Rock Staubus Gym, giving the Lady Wildcats the regular-season District 4-5A championship.
Clovis, which has won 12 in a row and 17 of its last 18, closes out its regular season at Hobbs on Friday night, secure in the knowledge that it will host the district tournament final the following weekend.
It was the first time in four games the Lady Cats (21-4, 3-0 district) did not trail at some point of the final period. Still, Lady Cats coach Jeff Reed wasn’t happy with his team’s overall performance.
“We’re not as focused in practice as we need to be,” he said. “We think we can just step on to the court and win.
“We’ve been satisfied with wins that aren’t as good as we’re capable of doing. If we do that at Hobbs, we’re going to get beat.”
Clovis used a 12-0 run over the final five minutes of the first quarter to pretty much put this one away. The Lady Cats led 30-15 at halftime and were never seriously threatened, although they did have some trouble finishing it off.
“I think we came out better than we usually do,” said senior guard Leia Willis, who collected 12 points and six assists. “We just have to keep on playing hard and trying to build on our lead.”
Junior post Antiesha Brown finished with 19 points on 8-of-14 shooting, and may have been close to a double-double with numerous steals. Senior Brittany Johnson added 10 points, while sophomore Ashlee Pierson contributed nine points and seven rebounds off the bench.
Reed had emphasized starting faster after the last three games, including a 53-44 struggle last week at Carlsbad.
“The difference in the two games is Clovis came out with a tremendous amount of energy over last week,” first-year Cavegirls coach John Lee Zumbrun said. “Coach Reed did a good job of mixing up the presses tonight, and our young players didn’t pick it up.”
The Lady Cats, meantime, put up 52 shots and were guilty of 15 turnovers — just four combined in the middle two quarters.
Zumbrun said after winning only 15 games combined over the previous three seasons, the Cavegirls are turning the corner.
“To be 13-13 and play some teams tough … we know we have a long way to go, but we have something to build on,” he said.
Even with nothing on the line Friday night, Willis said the Lady Cats still have motivation.
“Against Hobbs, there’s always a lot on the line,” she said. “We just need to go hard and take the game for pride.”