The Carson High girls basketball team may have played its best game of the year, but it wasn't quite enough in a 47-40 loss to host Juneau Douglas in the Capital Classic in Alaska on Friday.
The effort was encouraging against at team that is the defending state champion since the Senators had three starters plagued by foul trouble: Nicole Scott, Rosella Nunez and Catherine Brekken. Carson was also playing without another starter, Sinead McSweeney, who was nursing an ankle injury.
Nunez ended up fouling out early in the fourth quarter and Scott fouled out with a minute left.
"We progressed again," Carson assistant coach Ron Tamori said. "We stepped it up. This is a quality team.
"We played hard, improved in a lot of areas. The kids did a really good job. We were in it until the end."
Had Carson beaten Juneau it would have won the tournament title. Both teams would have finished 2-1 and the Senators would have been awarded the title had it beaten Juneau.
Juneau also featured the returning state player of the year in Talisha Rhea, who is just a junior. Rhea finished with 13 points, hitting 9-of-13 from the foul line.
But Tamori said Rhea's passing was a difference in the game. "She beat us with her passing," he said.
Brandi Vega helped pick up the slack for Nunez and did a good job of defending Rhea, Tamori said. Tamori also said Vega did a good job of handling Juneau's pressure. "Brandi Vega did an outstanding job bringing the ball up against the press," he said.
Carson jumped out to a 4-0 lead, but Juneau came back to take a 12-6 lead after one quarter. The Senators closed to within 17-15 at halftime and trailed 23-21 when it began to be hurt by foul trouble. Juneau went on to outscore Carson 16-9 in the third quarter to take a 33-24 lead.
The Senators closed to within four points before Juneau put the game away at the foul line. Scott scored 13 points, Vega had seven points and Kaitlin Burroughs added five points for Carson, which next plays Tuesday at Fallon.
CARSON JVS 47, FALLON 14
Christa Casci was named to the all-tournament team after scoring 10 points in the win for the Carson junior varsity girls basketball team at the State Farm Classic. Also for Carson, Megan Kilty scored 12 points, Morgan Nuckols had nine points, Brittany DeRosa had eight points and Taylor Stokes added four points.
CARSON FRESHMEN 34, GALENA 27
Breanna Anderson scored 12 points, Tiffany O'Day had 10 points and Loretta Cagle added three points in the win for the Carson freshmen girls basketball team at the State Farm Classic.