Simple mistakes and a lack of confidence are what is plaguing North Pulaski.
Those two things doomed the Falcons (4-17, 1-11 5A-Central) at McClellan this past Tuesday. Leading most of the contest, things changed for North Pulaski at the 3:21 mark. That is when the Lions tied the contest at 42-all. With 1:13 left in the game, the Lions went ahead 44-42 for the final margin. During the last 3:21, North Pulaski missed three shots including two under the basket and was guilty of four turnovers.
"We finally started out well, and I felt like we had it," North Pulaski Coach Stacy Dalmut said. "I’m proud of the girls, and we fought hard. I told them after the game that it was two things—confidence and the little things."
When asked when she saw the game turn, Dalmut said it was in the last three minutes. That was when she saw the mistakes happening and is not sure why. She thinks part of the reason is that the seniors have had a different coach every year and aren’t used to consistent coaching and teaching. With nine seconds left in the game, Dalmut called a timeout to set up a play to try and get a shot off. She says they ran the play completely wrong.
"After the game Kiarra (Evans, freshman forward) used the word confidence," Dalmut said. "When I played I wanted the ball, and I told them they have to want it."
Freshman Raigen Thomas came off the bench and paced the Falcons with 12 points. Sophomore Ilycia Carter added 12 points. Dalmut didn’t start her freshmen because up until the last three games she had been getting 12-14 points from them. That production fell off, but not starting them paid off. Evans added six points as did senior Cathy Waylan.
Last Friday, North Pulaski lost to Sylvan Hills, 55-36, at home. Carter was the leading scorer with 13 points. Dalmut says her team is playing better on the road than at home. Perhaps that will change tonight as North Pulaski hosts Little Rock Mills in a rescheduled contest. Dalmut would like a win to end the season.
"I told them to take Tuesday’s game to tonight’s game," Dalmut said. "But, we have to remember to have confidence and take care of the little things."