RCHS Lady Panthers lose last and look forward

For the last game of an unusual season, the Rappahannock Varsity Girls’ Basketball team traveled to play the East Hardy Cougars in Baker, West Virginia. The Panthers suffered a 65-30 loss.

“East Hardy had a good team with size advantage in the post,” said Coach Donald O’Meara after the Feb. 19 game. Size aided Rappahannock’s opponents, but there were other assets that propelled them, too, O’Meara said. “They had talented shooting guards and a deep, deep bench.”

After three weeks without a game and just one practice, the Panthers would have been excused for playing soft. But even with the weather obstacle and an intimidating adversary, the Ladies featured their trademark determination. “The girls played hard and left it all on the court,” O’Meara said, “which is all a coach can ask of them.”

Several feature players deserve commendations for their efforts. For the final game of her senior year, Megan Lee led the team with 10 points. Joslyn Smith scored 6, Lauren Light 5, and Lauren Settle added 4 to the scoreboard. Coach was proud of his team’s attitude: “Everyone played and contributed in our final game.”

At the end of a challenging season, O’Meara offered his perspective. “This was a rough year with games being canceled. We had over 12 games called off – the most ever in my coaching career. The missed games really affected us and our rhythm as a team.”

With a regrettable weather-driven season behind him, O’Meara revealed his outlook. “I am still very excited about the future of this team and program. We will only lose one player this year and return four starters. We have the makings to have a great team next year. The coaches have challenged the girls that next season starts today. What we do between now and Nov. 1 will determine everything. I am very excited about the future of this program.”