For a little while in the second half Saturday, the Richland and Ferris girls basketball teams appeared to be holding a 3-point shootout.
The teams traded long-distance dedications on four possessions in the fourth quarter, with the last one putting Ferris on top for good as the Saxons escaped Art Dawald Gymnasium with a 46-41 victory.
Richland’s Britney Pringle hit a pair of 3-pointers, sandwiched around one from Ferris’ Jill Louthian to put the Bombers on top 38-36 with 3 minutes, 51 seconds left.
But a jumper by Ferris’ Michelle Strauss, and a final 3-ball from Brittney Johnson sealed the victory.
“Some of our decisions weren’t great down at the end of the game,” Richland coach Cindy McCoy said. “But experience will help us out. We never felt settled in our offense. The looks were there, and had those dropped it would’ve changed the game.”
It didn’t happen, though, as the Bombers (1-2 overall) let a winnable game against a tough Spokane team slip away.
“It took us awhile to get in our groove offensively,” Pringle said. “Our goal is to win every game, but the preseason is to work out the kinks. Playing these tough teams will make us better in (league play).”
Pringle and the Bombers struggled in the first half. Pringle is the team’s returning scoring leader and one of just three seniors. She didn’t make a field goal in the first 20 minutes, but that all changed quickly in the third quarter.
The Bombers went on an 11-3 run, as Kennedy Corrigan hit a 3-pointer, Pringle hit two 3-pointers and Jaclyn Parnell made a putback.
Pringle kept the barrage up in the fourth quarter, but the Bombers missed a couple shots and turned the ball over twice as Ferris went on a 10-3 spurt to finish the game.
“They got some quick 3s,” Pringle said. “They got good shots off and ours didn’t go in.”
The Bombers feature three sophomores and three freshmen on the varsity squad. That mix, with some upperclassmen who are adjusting to bigger roles created some issues Saturday.
“It’s a little bit of both, trying to find our offense and get experience,” McCoy said. “We have some kids who are having to step into a big role that they haven’t had.
“It’s early in the season and they have more work to do, but I’m liking what I’m seeing generally.”
Pringle’s 14 points led the Bombers, while Hailey Turner added seven points and 10 rebounds — including four offensive boards. Corrigan finished with seven points.
Johnson scored a game-high 21 points and pulled down six rebounds for Ferris, while Abby Liss made 9-of-12 free throws, including five in the final 90 seconds to help seal the victory.
FERRIS — Brittney Johnson 7 3-3 21, Michelle Strauss 1 1-2 3, Erica Smith 0 0-0 0, Abby Liss 1 9-12 12, Jill Louthian 1 0-0 3, Bria Bowton 1 1-2 3, Kaley Lenhart 1 1-2 4, Siniva Areta 0 0-0 0. Totals 12 15-21 46.
RICHLAND — Jaclyn Parnell 1 3-6 5, Kayla Catone 2 0-1 4, Hailey Turner 3 1-2 7, Abby Duckworth 0 0-1 0, Sarah McCormick 1 0-0 2, Kennedy Corrigan 2 2-2 7, Britney Pringle 4 2-4 14, Sarah Hiller 0 2-2 2. Totals 13 10-18 41.
Ferris 8 12 10 16 — 46Richland 9 7 15 10 — 41
3-pointers—Ferris 7 (Johnson 4, Liss, Louthian, Lenhart), Richland 5 (Pringle 4, Corrigan). Total fouls—Ferris 17, Richland 16. Rebounds—Ferris 33 (Johnson, Liss 6), Richland 40 (Turner 10). Turnovers—Ferris 15, Richland 17.