MOORE — When the season started, Amanda Patterson wasn't playing her normal game. Even though she was still leading Moore in scoring, the junior guard didn't seem to be playing with the same enthusiasm and activity as she had her previous two seasons.
Part of that was Patterson's mindset coming into the season. She was looking to facilitate more and get her teammates more involved.
"Personally I try to average like 15 points a game, at least two steals and for or five assists," Patterson said.
But Patterson began to show flashes of her old self in the final day of the John Noble Invitational Tournament. Playing in the seventh place game against Lawton, Patterson exploded for 28 points to lead Moore to its third win of the season.
"We would love to see points from her every game," MHS coach Tim Gray said. "She is seeing every teams best defender with helpers, quite a bit and has been 'box and one' quite a bit in our tournament games. She has to learn how to work through that and still lead, she is a smart young lady and our assistant coaches work with her every day on those things."
When Patterson burst on the scene at EHS, she was a scoring machine. Even though the Lions weren't winning games, her fiery play kept the team in contests.
Moore is still struggling to win, but Patterson has not let that stop her from enjoying being on the court.
"I just try not to think about it,' Patterson said. "And think about how much I like being around the girls. They are my family."
That ability to keep playing hard despite the score is a sign of the maturity Patterson has shown her coaches this year.
"Amanda stepped up and shrugged off any adversity that came her way," Gray said. "That is growing up, we see these kids every day and want to help them grow into young adults with a bright future. I believe ALL coaches are in it for that reason, for the kids."
Yet, Gray said he still expect more from Patterson. He describes her career at Moore so far as unfulfilled.
"She has the potential to go as far as she decides to go," Gray said. "We just try to accommodate her talents while still working within our team philosophy. She knows that, and is working hard on being a better player and person, all at the same time. She can do it. We are just waiting and watching, encouraging her every day."
One of the area's Patterson has tried to improve upon the most is her leadership. She says she has come a long way, but still has much to learn.
"It's a lot better this year than I have been in the past," Patterson said. "But I get down on myself a little bit, but I am getting better about keeping my head up out there on the court. I just try not to think about how it's going. Just try to keep my head in the game and keep the score 0-0 in my mind."
With three games left in the season, the Lions have already surpassed their win total from last year. Now it's all about getting better and continuing to try to build the program. Patterson said she has already seen major differences in the team and looks forward to continuing the progress.
"Our defense has improved a lot," Patterson said. "We got girls actually just trying now. Keeping their heads up. It's the most important thing you can do. You just have to keep your head up and keep pushing forward. You can't think about the score. I think we should keep playing like try and play summer ball together. Just keep improving Keep working hard."