Lady Spartans rout Weld Central

By Dan Karpiel
The Surveyor

One game does not a season make, especially when it’s the first game of the season. Yet, that being said, there was no shortage of smiles and high-fives from the Berthoud High School girls’ basketball team after it demolished visiting Weld Central by a 79-33 final in their season opener on Dec. 1.

Led by senior standout Kristina Cavey, who by herself out-scored the Lady Rebels with a career-best 35 points, the 79 Berthoud hung on the board were the most the team has scored in a single game since the 2006-07 season.

“I think we did pretty well, offensively I think we were really good,” Berthoud Head Coach Randy Earl said after the game. “We’ve been working on some stuff in practice, doing some new things, but we’ve got a lot of kids who’ve played … we have people with a lot of time playing varsity basketball.”

The experience factor of which Earl speaks was evident from the opening tip. After the two teams traded baskets on their respective opening possessions, the Lady Spartans assembled a 22-0 scoring run in the remaining seven-plus minutes of the first period to take a commanding 24-2 lead. Berthoud played crisply on offense, making use of their speed advantage while taking, and making, smart shots. The Lady Spartans shot 54 percent from the floor in the game and missed only one of 16 free throws.

Center Taylor Armitage scored six of her 14 points in the opening quarter, and power forward Maria Fate did the same in the second. The pair of Berthoud seniors also combined to pull down nine total rebounds on the night.

The one notable exception to the Lady Spartans considerably experienced roster is freshman guard Sydney Meis. The transplant from Kansas, who started for Berthoud and, along with Cavey and junior Sarah Howard, served as the one of the team’s primary ball-handlers, said it was a little intimidating being the lone freshman on the varsity squad but, “as I grew to be best friends with all of them it was just playing with friends, there was no age difference. Out there it’s just team.”

Meis added that she was a little nervous for her high school debut.

“For my first game, being a freshman, I was a little jittery,” she said. “It was a little stressful but I calmed down and I just had fun; it’s all about having fun.” On Berthoud’s third possession, Meis drained a 3-pointer to give the Lady Spartans a lead from which they would never look back.

So much for nerves.

Earl called his freshman guard “very coachable” and credited her hard work.

“She’s just a really skilled player; she works really hard at it,” Earl said. “I know she worked really hard on some things here in the last couple days trying to make herself get better. She was 100 percent improved tonight from Friday’s scrimmage; it was night and day difference.”

Meis, who scored eight points, swiped a pair of steals and pulled down four rebounds on the night, looked like a natural on the court.

“I practice every day, I work at home, I do drills, I get help from teammates, everything I can do,” Meis said. “Basketball has been in my family for a very long time so it comes kind of natural for me, but I’ve put in a lot of hard work.”

The Lady Spartans compete in the Manual High School tournament in Denver Dec. 3-5. The annual Spartan Classic, hosted jointly by the boys’ and girls’ teams takes place at BHS Dec. 9-12.