December 26, 2012 - The Mehlville Senior High School girls' basketball team probably was licking its wounds after a tough loss to the Seckman Jaguars in the opening round of the Seckman tournament Wednesday.
The Panthers (4-3) were on the path to a 5-2 start to the 2012-2013 season with a 14-point lead going into the half, but they eventually fell to the Jaguars 44-49.
"We were up 14 at the half and we blew a lead," Mehlville head coach Jacquelyn Wamser told the Call. "Basically, they came out fired up and we just couldn't answer back."
Top offensive producers Sierra Gray, Emily Fox and Erin Huie put points on the scoreboard in the contest, but it wasn't enough to stop Seckman.
"It's always important to have more than one person than score," Wamser said about her top three-point scorers. "Any time they can come out; when everyone comes out, that's usually when we are most successful."
While the Panthers have a had a few ups and down already this season, Wamser is pleased with their team game and is optimistic that element will yield some rewards.
"We have a really tight-knit group of hard-working girls," the Mehlville coach said. "Everybody comes out and gives great effort in practice and great effort in games and they all work together pretty well, too.
"Everyone is content to share the spotlight. We don't have anybody that's looking to do it all themselves. Everyone works together, and it's real unselfish. We are getting contributions from almost everyone at any given point in the game, which is good.
"As far as that goes we just need to learn to be more consistent and to follow through and have some confidence, too, and I think if that all comes together well have some good luck down the stretch, maybe," she added.
The secret ingredient in the recipe for success is defense, which is something the Panthers are going to have to perfect to put them in the running to go the distance.
"When our defense is on, it looks good. So far, we've been pretty good as far as our communication and learning to anticipate stuff," Wamser said. "Our defense is good whenever we put our minds to it for sure."