It had been years since the 3A Buffalo High School Lady Bison basketball took on the 4A Sheridan High School Lady Broncs. It had been much longer since the Lady Bison were able to get away with a victory against the team up north.
But Thursday night at SHS, the Lady Bison broke that streak with an impressive 45-35 win to up their record to 5-0 on the season while playing some of their best basketball of the year.
“We’ve had some great teams in the past that were very competitive at the state level,” coach Michelle Dahlberg said. “We went and played Sheridan and the closest game we ever had was losing by 12 points. So it was pretty exciting to walk away with this win.”
The Lady Broncs have size and speed, but are still looking to find their rhythm this season. The team is still looking for its first win, but has faced some of the best 4A teams in Wyoming and Montana.
After getting into foul trouble early, Buffalo managed to work through that adversity and build on the confidence they had entering the game.
Buffalo led by one after the first frame and took a three-point lead heading into the break. After three quarters the Lady Bison led 29-26, and then put together a strong fourth quarter to close things out.
Seren Chapin drained one of her two from distance, Eli Olsen converted on a post move and the Lady Bison built what seemed like a comfortable 10-point lead early in the fourth.
A pair of 3-pointers from Sheridan cut into that lead, but the Lady Bison continued to shut down the Lady Broncs to roll to the win.
Going 17 of 24 from the foul line, 7 of 8 in the fourth quarter, certainly helped.
“Free throw shooting was huge for us,” Dahlberg said. “We tried to press them, but they were just patient enough breaking it to where we didn’t end up forcing a whole lot of turnovers. They have a well-rounded team and really spread their offense around. You have to guard everyone.”
Chapin finished with 12 points for Buffalo. Teaghen Sweckard, Sydni Dobbin and Kaydin Davis put in eight points apiece. Eli Olsen scored six points in limited minutes after ending up on the wrong end of a handful of calls from officials.
“I told them that 4A was way faster and way more intense and they would need to be ready to step it up,” Dahlberg said. “They went in there confident. Right now we’re trying to build on that confidence and find where everyone is going to fit in the best to do their own part in helping this team.”
Davis added seven rebounds, four assists and four steals on the night. Dobbin hauled in five boards. Jordyn McNamee added a pair of rebounds and one steal.
The Lady Bison will be back in action on Jan. 4 when they travel to Pinedale for the Winter Classic tournament.