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Sunburst eighth grader Ella Samsal races the ball up the floor during the Lady Refiner’s battle with Valier last Tuesday.

Sunburst Refiners girls basketball team traveled to Valier on Jan. 4 and fell to the Panthers 62-42. Sunburst was supposed to host Heart Butte on Jan. 7 but the game was postponed due to the weather. A make-up date has not been scheduled yet.

The Lady Panthers came out strong and took a 15-3 lead midway through the first quarter. The Panthers led 17-10 after the first eight minutes, but the Lady Refiners kept their composure and battled back to eventually take a lead towards the end of the second quarter.  But a late run by Valier gave them a 35-27 lead at halftime.

The Lady Refiners battled foul trouble throughout the whole game but it really took a toll on them in the second half. The Panthers outscored the Refiners 12-7 in the third quarter to take a 47-34 lead. Valier  proved to be too much for the Lady Refiners late and sealed the win.

“I was very happy with how we didn’t give up after getting down early. I thought we did a great job of battling back to stay in the game,” commented head coach Tyler Tharp. “It felt like we finally had a game where we shot well. I thought we handled their press very well. Their scoring runs came on great shooting as they made eight 3’s throughout the game.”

Claire Bucklin again led the Refiners in scoring with 19, Nikki Nau was close behind with 18. Tara Robins added three, and Megan Hout went 2-for-2 from the free throw line to round out the scoring.

This week Sunburst will travel to Simms on Thursday, Jan. 13, and then host Power on Friday, Jan. 14. Both games are scheduled to start at 6 p.m.

For more Sunburst High School sports coverage oflast week’s action, pick up a copy or subscribe to the Shelby Promoter at http://www.cutbankpioneerpress.com/site/services/

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