Girls’ basketball loses to Cooper for 14th year in a row

Team struggles in first half, sways outcome


Molly Schochet

Juniors Kendall Coley and Raegan Alexander to block Robbinsdale Cooper defender junior Meme Wheeler Jan 3. Park lost to Robbinsdale Cooper 62-69. At one point during the second half, the team was down by two points.

Sofia Seewald

After girls’ basketball lost to Robbinsdale Cooper Jan. 3, junior and captain Kendall Coley said the team’s lack of strength and focus in the first half led to an undesired outcome.

“The first half we got down by a little,” Coley said. “It was because we didn’t turn on that motor that we needed until the second half. (We) realized we needed to pick up the intensity (and) start pushing sooner in the game.”

According to senior and captain Jordyn Turek, there were several small mistakes made throughout the game which contributed to the loss. 

“It was frustrating because if we would have cleaned up a little throughout the whole game and had less turnovers we could have won, but I was glad to see we changed our energy toward the end of the game,” Turek said. “It definitely hurt that we weren’t able to pull out a win.”

Coach Chris Nordstrom said there was some pressure to win the game, as Park’s last win against Robbinsdale Cooper was in 2006. 

“It (was) the first game of the conference. We haven’t beat Cooper in (14) years, so we felt like we had an opportunity to do that tonight and we let it slip away,” Nordstrom said. 

While the first half did not go as planned, Turek said the team improved immensely by the second half. 

“It was nice to see what (Cooper was) doing in the first half so we could come out and be prepared for the (next half). We were a lot calmer, we took our time, looked for the open shots. We adapted well to their defense and we started to be more poised and strong with the ball,” Turek said. “Once we started pressing, we were tired, but we dug a lot deeper and realized that this is a close game and we need to give it our all.”

According to Nordstrom, the score was close toward the end of the game, but the team was unable to fully come back from being down in the first half.  

“We were down about 17 (points) and we cut it into two or four points, so we battled all the way back,” Nordstrom said. “There were some good things we did, it was just a little too late.”

Even though the loss was disappointing for the team, Coley said it was still an enjoyable game because of the team’s ability to maintain a positive attitude.

“We always come into this game wanting to get (a win), but it’s on us to actually show for it and show that we really want it,” Coley said. “At the end of the day, we worked together as a team and I think we had fun on the court.” 

Park’s next game is 7 p.m. Jan. 7 at St. Louis Park High School against Bloomington Kennedy.