Lakewood girls lose home opener, but gain something in return

Lakewood seniors Anna Work (#33) and Jocelyn Shafer (#30) double team a Bellingham player.  - Photo courtesy AKAASH SAINI
Lakewood seniors Anna Work (#33) and Jocelyn Shafer (#30) double team a Bellingham player.
— image credit: Photo courtesy AKAASH SAINI

LAKEWOOD — With only four returning varsity players, would Cougar girls basketball play with the same intensity it has been known for in the past?

Yes, the intensity is there, but it was in a losing effort. Lakewood lost its Dec. 9 home opener against Bellingham, 61-54. The Cougars started out strong with a two-point hold after the first half. The second half was dominated by the sharp-shooting Red Raiders.

Coach Chris Walster was very pleased with his team’s effort, stating, “If we play like that every game, we will win many times this season.”

The Cougars played their first two non-conference games against strong opponents. Lakewood faced both, 4A Stanwood and 2A Bellingham. The Red Raiders have a deep roster and are expected to do well this season. As for Lakewood, the fact that they asserted themselves against two established, non-conference teams, bodes good things yet to come.

Senior captain Anna Work led the Cougars with 17 points against Bellingham and was identified regionally as the 2A Female Athlete of the Week for her performance against Stanwood. Her 12 points, 8 rebounds, 6 steals and 2 assists in the season opener garnered her the award. She was surprised but knew it was only the beginning of good things that could happen for this team and herself.

So far, the Cougar girls have exceeded their projections as basement dwellers. The team is mainly consisting of freshmen and sophomores, yet senior Jillian Shafer explained this team “gets along with each other very well. The bond we have shows how well put together our defense is.”

That bond showed well Dec. 12 when Lakewood won its first preseason game against Cedar Park Christian 54-42. Anna Work led all scorers again with 18 points, while fellow senior Jocelyn Shafer added 16.

The Cougars are in action Dec. 17 against the Red Wolves of Cedarcrest High School.

At Lakewood H.S.

Bellingham 16 15 15 15 61

Lakewood 16 17 9 12 54

At Cedar Park Christian

Lakewood 17 12 15 10 54

CP Christian 6 12 11 13 42

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