PORTLAND – This early in the season, the whole idea is to get better.

Sometimes, though, that can mean two different things.

For instance, while the Deering High girls’ basketball team, a favorite in Western Class A, is working to improve its offense each time it gets the ball, Scarborough’s young squad is simply trying to get better.

The Rams showed exactly what can happen when their offense finds its timing, easing to a 68-33 victory over Scarborough on Friday night as Kayla Burchill scored 25 points, hitting five 3-pointers, and Chelsea Saucier handed out nine assists.

“We had maybe four forced shots, and that’s down from our previous two games,” said Deering Coach Mike Murphy. “We just let our offense flow tonight. We moved the ball against their zone and we moved the ball against their (man-to-man defense) much better than we have in our previous games. I’m very pleased.”

And so was Scarborough Coach Jim Seavey.

The Red Storm improved their scoring in each quarter and saw a decrease in turnovers as the game progressed.

“That’s how it’s going to be,” he said. “We’re young and we want to improve every time we step on the floor, whether it’s the possession, the quarter or the game. That’s the goal.

“We really got some good looks. We just don’t finish right now, for whatever reason. We rush our shots or we’re worried about them getting blocked instead of just going up strong. It will come with experience.”

Deering took early control to improve to 3-0. Defending Class A state champion Scarborough dropped to 0-3, as many losses as the Red Storm have had in the previous two seasons combined.

“It will come,” said Seavey. “The kids are working really hard. We just need to be patient and eventually it will be their time.”

Deering opened a 22-5 lead after one quarter, using a tenacious defense to force nine turnovers. The Red Storm trailed only 4-2 after Alisha Starbird’s jumper before Deering ran off 11 points, capped by Burchill’s first 3-pointer.

“We needed to work on things, like moving the ball,” said Saucier. “We just need to work on our offense, our plays. We’re pretty good on defense.”

And that, said Murphy, is what will carry the Rams through any games when the offense struggles.

“They play hard,” said Murphy. “They take away passing angles, they take away lanes. If you’re going to give up a bucket, make them earn it. We’ve seen that the last five, six, seven, eight years at this school.”

Burchill, who is averaging 26.3 points in three games, said the Rams showed a lot of improvement in team play.

“We were looking to run our offenses more,” said Burchill. “In the past games we haven’t been running them well, setting screens, but I think we did that well tonight.”

Burchill hit two 3-pointers in the second quarter and two more in the third. Ella Ramonas was effective inside with 14 points.

Mo Hannan led Scarborough with 10 points.

Staff Writer Mike Lowe can be contacted at 791-6422 or at:

[email protected]