The HIES basketball teams earned a split on the road Saturday night at Paideia – the girls came away with a 42-30 win for their fourth victory in a row while the boys dropped a tough 54-45 decision to the #9-ranked Pythons.
Both teams will be in action again Tuesday – this time at home for a 5A subregion matchup against Walker. Both squads are 1-0 in conference play after Friday’s nights wins over Mt. Paran – also on the road.
Despite Saturday’s loss, boys’ Coach Mike Harner saw some good things from his young team.
“Once again we played extremely well defensively,” he said. “The kids are starting to realize that we can be a good basketball team if we get after it and play good defense. If we compete on the defensive end, we give ourselves a chance to win.”
Kramer Deans, Darius Bowling and Alex Watkins were three key defenders who excelled against Paideia’s big men.
“They were huge inside,” Harner said of Paideia. “They went 6-8, 6-6 and 6-5, so I’m really proud of those three.”
For the scoring, DeMarcus Acree led with 16 points, Hamilton Bailey followed with 15. Deans had six, Tyler Heyman four and Taylor Hammond two.
On the girls’ side, Tony Watkins’ squad started out cold from the floor but came away with a dominating second half.
“We played well, we just couldn’t hit a shot in the first two quarters,” he said. “It was 14-14 at halftime. We picked it up in the second half and had a 20-point fourth quarter. It was probably the best we’ve executed all year.”
Madison McBride led with 14 points, Eryn Delaney and Elandria Thurmond had eight each. Delaney also pulled eight rebounds.
Other scoring included Shamaz Denerson with four and Bailey McDearis, Brianne Sienon, Lauren Seiple and Alex Williams with two each.
“Bailey really got after it and I thought Elandria played a good game, too,” Watkins added.
Tipoff for the games Tuesday are at 6 and 7:30 p.m.