The James Irwin girls' basketball team suffered one of the most lopsided losses in Colorado history Friday night.
And the Jaguars coach, Anthony Byrd, is completely fine with that.
He's not embarrassed, upset or sad about what happened.
Final score: Lamar 73, James Irwin 0.
No, that's not a typo.
Though quarter-by-quarter scores weren't immediately available, Byrd said defending Class 3A state champion Lamar averaged about 20 points per quarter. And he claimed that when the Savages were well ahead in the Class 3A Tri-Peaks League game at the James Irwin gym, he told opposing coach Erik Melgoza, "Don't take it easy on me."
"I'd rather have you beat me down than have mercy on me," Byrd said. "You can't punish the girls or guys who do work on their game. You teach the game, you teach it one way. You teach them to have class. You teach them to play until the buzzer goes off. You can't say, 'Play until you have 30 and relax.' No. you play one way and that's play hard."
The final score should come with an asterisk, however. The Jaguars were without point guard Krystina Hagood, who averages nearly 20 points. The sophomore missed the game to attend to a prior obligation.
Hagood's absence exposed a harsh truth: The rest of the Jaguars (3-13, 2-8 TPL) rely heavily on one player to carry the offense.
"We don't really have a lot of girls with the skill development to create and get their own shots," Byrd said. "I knew it was going to be difficult for us to score."
The loss brings back memories of Sierra's 101-7 win over Mitchell on Jan. 11.
The Colorado High School Activities Association no longer keeps record of the widest margin of victory, saying, "This category has been suspended in the spirit of the game and good sportsmanship."
Still, Byrd believes Friday's lopsided loss to Lamar could push his Jaguars to get better.