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Cowgirls connect for long-awaited win

Nicole Evans scored a team-high 15 points to lead the Cowgirls to their first win in more than a year.
   The 48-45 triumph against Burns in Prineville Friday was Crook County's (1-3) first victory since topping Sandy 43-40 in overtime Dec. 5, 2000.
   "It was great for our kids," said CCHS head coach Cheri Rasmussen. "I think we need to continue to build on what we started Friday because we do have a long way to go and we need to learn how to put teams away and win big when we have a chance."
   Just as in their opener against Madras, the Cowgirls executed their stuff early and found themselves up by 12, 28-16 at the break.
   In the second half, Evans connected on four of Crook County's opening five points to aid in extending her team's lead to 33-18.
   "I think we came out really hard and really consistent with not a lot of turnovers," Evans said. "I just tried to get out there and keep pumped up."
   In the final quarter, the Cowgirls were tested by Chelsea Ross and the Hilanders as Burns outscored Crook County 20-13. Ross came through with a game-high 20 points during the night and turned up the heat by taking down 12 points in the fourth quarter alone.
   "We didn't do as good a job defensively on her the last quarter, but she also got hot," Rasmussen said. "You have to give her a salute..., but we also didn't step up defensively when we needed to."
   With the game on the line, Evans came through big for Crook County, sinking a pair of two-point buckets down-the-stretch. With just a one-point Cowgirl lead and 30 seconds left in the game, MaryKate McCarthy busted a two-point shot of her own to put her Prineville team up for good.
   "I think it was a great group effort," Rasmussen said. Cassie Pruett was the second-leading scorer for Crook County with 13.