Despite a great effort, the Laramie Lady Plainsmen lost to No. 1 ranked Cheyenne East 53-48 Thursday night at Laramie High School.

Laramie (5-13, 0-4) took the top-ranked Thunderbirds to the wire. The Lady Plainsmen trailed by 13 in the third quarter, but battled back and cut the deficit to three points in the fourth quarter. Cheyenne East made four free throws in the final minute to hold on.

Lady Plainsmen head coach Rod Tyson said his team is definitely getting better.

“They played really well down the stretch. They were being smart, and then, we hit that little bug-a-boo that we always hit, two or three turnovers in a row where they (the opponent) always get points out of it.”

LHS had a 16-12 lead after the first quarter. The second and start of the third is where they struggled. Laramie scored only four points in the second period. They were down 26-20 at the break. The Lady Plainsmen started the second half 0-6 from the field.

Cheyenne East (20-1, 4-0) built their advantage to 34-21 early in the third. Laramie didn’t go away and got within 49-46 in the fourth on a Cox lay-up with just under two minutes left.

Jennifer Aadland led LHS with 25 points and 12 rebounds. Kylee Cox had 10 points off the bench. Laramie shot 34 percent in the game, but went 10-17, 59 percent, at the foul line.

The Thunderbirds were led by Ky Buell with 21 points and eight rebounds. They shot 35 percent in the game.

The Lady Plainsmen head to Cheyenne to play No. 4 Central Friday night.

Tyson added, “We’ve just got to be smart and solid down the stretch again. Make sure we stay in the game because it’s a really tough place to play over there. A lot of weird things start happening. We’ve gotta be tough, fight through that and continue to battle.”

The game starts at 6 p.m. from the Central High School Fieldhouse.

Laramie Plainsmen

Second-ranked Cheyenne East shot 60 percent from 3-point range and pulled away from the Laramie Plainsmen for a 76-55 victory at LHS Thursday night.

The Thunderbirds went 12-20 from deep and shot 54 percent from the field. Erik Oliver had 19 points, 16 of which came in the second half.

Laramie (7-11, 1-3) dropped its fifth straight game. They were only down 13-8 after the first quarter but were out-scored 20-10 in the second. They trailed 33-18 at halftime. The Plainsmen rallied in the third and closed within 10, at 49-39.

LHS missed a left corner three that would have cut it to seven. Cheyenne East got the rebound and Oliver made a three right before the end of the period for a 52-39 advantage. The Thunderbirds pulled away in the fourth for the easy win.

Plainsmen coach Travis Brown said the kids really competed.

“We put ourselves in a situation to have success, and unfortunately, we just couldn’t close that gap a little bit closer. Then, as they pulled away, I think our confidence just left us a little bit.”

The Plainsmen were led by Hudda Herrera with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Tyler Oppie scored 13 points off the bench. Laramie shot 37 percent in the game.

Cheyenne East (17-2, 4-0) also got 11 points from Chance Aumiller and 10 from Xavier McCord.

LHS heads to Cheyenne to play No. 4 Central Friday.

Brown added, “If we bring the effort we had tonight (to Friday’s game at Central), I’ll be very pleased. They’re a different style of team (then East). They’re big inside. I gotta see if we can bring the same effort and energy and see who’s healthy.

Laramie played Thursday without sophomore starter Christian Mickelson due to illness. Senior Will Tyser left the game with an injury.

The Plainsmen take on the Indians at 7:30 p.m. from the Central Fieldhouse.

Coverage

KOWB (AM 1290) will broadcast the game live tonight. Join David Settle for coverage starting at 5:30 p.m. You can also listen online, through the KOWB App, or any Amazon Alexa-enabled device.