BANDON — Last winter, Bandon’s girls lost 12 of their first 13 games as they adjusted to new coach Jordan Sammons.
Despite finishing the season with just four wins, many of the Tigers couldn’t wait to get back on the court.
“We’ve been working every day,” said junior Kylie Lakey. “We’ve been putting in countless hours in the offseason.”
Sammons described Lakey, Ashley Strain and Noami Martin as gym rats over the summer. He said the other teammates have fed off that enthusiasm.
“We’ve got some ways to go,” he said. “Their offseason work was huge.”
Bandon got its second win in four tries this season with a 45-33 victory over visiting Pacific on Tuesday.
Lakey made all seven of her shots for a game-high 14 points and Martin hit a trio of 3-pointers and scored 11 points.
Kennedy Turner had a big game inside for Bandon with eight points and 14 rebounds, to go with eight steals.
The Tigers moved the ball well, setting up open shots they often converted.
Bandon overcame 50 turnovers — the Tigers also forced Pacific into 40 miscues — and fought off a couple of challenges by the Pirates in the second half.
Bandon led by 10 at halftime, but Pacific quickly cut it to four in the third quarter before Lakey had two baskets sandwiched around a 3-pointer by Martin to push the lead back up.
Lakey had three baskets along with one by her sister, Nikki, early in the fourth quarter to put the Tigers in control for good.
Turner said the Tigers have improved greatly in their second season under Sammons.
“It helps,” she said of having experience. “You know the plays. You know what works and doesn’t work, who needs to be where.”
Nearly all the players Bandon used Tuesday got a lot of time last year.
“The fact that we all played together last year, that helps so much,” Kylie Lakey said.
“We’ve improved so much.”
Kaiya Gourneau had 12 points and Madi Hall had 10 to lead the Pirates. They also combined for 14 of Pacific’s 31 steals. Audrey Griffiths, one of four freshmen for the Pirates who saw action in the game, had 10 steals.
Like Bandon, Pacific is a bunch better than last year, especially on defense. The offense will come around, coach Bob Lemerande said.
“We’re young,” Lemerande said. “I really feel like in about three or four weeks, you are going to see a jump.”