The California Pintos girls basketball team is having a good amount of success so far this season. Currently, the Pintos are 14-3 on the year and boast an eight-game win streak.
There were some speed bumps in the early stages of the season as the team started the season with a record of 3-2, but head coach Bobby Sangster said the team learned from those losses.
"There were speed bumps early on, with losses to Clinton in the first game of the year and then to Southern Boone. But I feel like those were productive losses that we learned from and we needed to reach the consistency level we have today," Sangster said.
"Our practices have become more focused and we understand that we have to bring our best version of ourselves to the floor each day that we possibly can. It is not surprising that we are finding ways to have success. These girls have worked extremely hard at their craft and love to compete for one another. We understood that we had a long way to go and still have much to learn, but we are growing as a team and hopefully continue to grow whether we win or lose a ballgame."
Since the Pintos' 55-39 loss to Southern Boone Dec. 7 in the championship game of the Tri-County Conference Tournament, California has won 11 of its last 12 games. During this run, the Pintos finished in first place Jan. 18 at the California girls tournament after defeating Southern Boone 51-39 in the championship game rematch.
The unselfish nature of the team is a big reason for its success, Sangster said.
"The love these girls have for one another, the desire they have for each other's success. They want to do their job so the team can be successful. This team is unselfish, sometimes to a fault, but it allows us to be the best team we can be," Sangster said.
As a result, the Pintos are getting contributions from everyone on the team.
"Each night, someone else shines," Sangster said. "It is the way this team is set up. It is not all about the scoring. These girls have embraced their roles and continue to improve in those roles and every night, someone else shines bright in their roles."
Sangster said that right now the team has an energetic mood going on. However, there are a few things the team needs to focus on to keep their success going.
"Toughness. Mentally, physically, and emotionally, we can never be tough enough," Sangster said. "We need to continue to improve our resiliency and continue to improve on our fundamentals."