'Hounds Sweep Cougars at RHS

Thursday, December 22, 2016
Lady Cougar Gabby Clark (15) dribbles out of crowded baseline in home action against Marmaduke last Thursday night. (TD photos/Tim Blair)

The Rector Cougars hosted their neighbors from Marmaduke in high school basketball on Thursday, Dec. 15, with the visitors sweeping all four games. On the night the 'Hound senior and junior girls, along with junior boys, easily handled their hosts--while the Cougar senior boys put up a good fight, only to fall due to a third-quarter slump.

Boys Games

The Rector Cougars dropped a pair of boys games to the Marmaduke Greyhounds on Thursday, Dec. 15, falling in both the junior and senior contests at RHS. A large crowd was on hand for the annual rivalry games, which included the two girls contests as well. A special recognition ceremony was also held at halftime of the senior boys game, as the RHS Sports Hall of Fame Plaque presentation was held.

Adam Romine (10) looks to drive to the basket for the junior Cougars in action last Thursday against Marmaduke at RHS. Pictured defending for the Greyhounds is Bradley Horton (15) and trailing the play is Marmaduke's Garrett Hensley (12).(TD photos/Tim Blair)

Senior Game

The Cougars and Greyhounds put on a good show for a capacity crowd at RHS last week, ending a full night of basketball action with a non-conference tilt between the two long-time rivals. And, when the dust had cleared the visitors had prevailed by a final of 75-52.

Both teams came out fired-up in the early going of the contest, as the Greyhounds battled to a 14-11 lead by the end of the first quarter. The two squads played dead even in the second, with each scoring 10 points in the frame, as the visitors went into the locker room at the half with a 24-21 advantage.

But, the third proved to be the deciding quarter, as the Greyhounds came out of the break and put up 32 points in the frame, while holding the Cougars to 14.

This gave the visitors a 56-35 lead going into the fourth quarter. And, despite the Cougars outscoring the 'Hounds 17-12 in the fourth, the MHS boys held on for the win.

"Our bench play was huge tonight, our guys knew the game plan, and they knew the scouting report and our energy and effort was there," Greyhound Head Coach Justin Ward said. "After all, this is Marmaduke-Rector, and if they can't get fired up for this game they probably ought to turn their stuff in--but, it was the little things, like one guy taking a charge and the way we rebounded the ball, I was pleased with their effort."

Derek Agee and Bryson Horton both had 18 for the Greyhounds as they led all scorers on the game, while Kirk Beshears had 13 and freshman Max Ford finished with 10 as the only Cougars in double figures.

"I thought we played really hard the whole game, and I thought we had great energy," Cougar Head Coach Matt Mills observed. "We ran the game plan just the way we wanted to, but right now--in every game we play, we have that three minute lapse and we had it again early in the third. And, we dug that 10 point hole and I felt like from there on we played even, we just couldn't get out of that hole."

As a team the Rector boys were 13 of 17 from the charity stripe, while the Greyhounds converted on 7 of 11 free throws on the game.

"They shot the ball well, give them credit," Mills added. "Every time they had the chance they buried it. I was feeling pretty good about our chances in the first half until that run, but right now we're not good enough offensively to dig a hole like that--it takes us too long to come out of it."

Junior Boys

The undefeated Marmaduke Junior Greyhounds posted another lopsided win during their visit to Rector, beating the young Cougars 60-17. The visitors enjoyed quarter leads of 20-3, 33-3 and 49-16 en route to the non-conference win.

Austin McCoy led all scorers with 22 for the Greyhounds, despite not scoring in the fourth quarter. Meanwhile, Lastin Lindsey paced the Cougars with 11 points, all coming in the third quarter of play.

"I thought my junior high guys did really well, I thought they shot well," Coach Ward noted of the Greyhound junior squad. "We went to Bay on Tuesday and had them down in the fourth quarter and let it get away, so we had a good practice on Wednesday and they came out ready to play and that was good for us."

Girls Games

The Marmaduke Lady Greyhounds rolled into Rector last Thursday evening and swept the Lady Cougars in both junior and senior girls play by a wide margin.

Senior Girls

The Lady Greyhounds came out hot in their game at RHS last Thursday, and dropped a barrage of early baskets on the Lady Cougars as they jumped to a 14-2 lead after one. The host squad tried to respond in the second, but fell in the frame 18-11 as the Lady 'Hounds enjoyed a 32-13 halftime advantage.

The third quarter also went to the visitors, as the MHS girls outscored the Lady Cougars 15-10 in the frame to take a 47-23 lead into the fourth. With both teams substituting freely, the visitors cruised to the non-conference win.

"Anytime you play Marmaduke you better be ready," Lady Cougar Coach Matt Dean noted.

Natalie Lentz led all scorers with 30 for the Greyhounds, while Jordan Mays was also in double figures with 14 points. Matison Dean paced the Rector girls with 9 points, while Mylessa Gant finished with 8.

As a team the Lady Cougars only visited the free throw line three times, converted on one attempt, while the Lady 'Hounds were 10 of 16 from the charity stripe on the night.

"They played hard. We're undermanned a little bit, we don't have a lot of the depth that we have had," Lady Greyhound Coach Rick Smith noted. "But, we got some quality minutes from the bench tonight and there's a couple of kids that may be playing themselves into a start."

Smith noted at 15-4 he feels the team has gotten the most out of their effort on the season, and looked forward to the first round NEA game with Armorel. (see seperate story this edition)

Junior Girls

The junior game also went to the Lady 'Hounds, as they continued to roll through the season without a loss. The Marmaduke girls jumped to an early 20-6 lead after one, held a 36-11 advantage at the half and led 57-18 en route to the 60-23 lopsided victory.

"That Marmaduke junior high team is tough, I don't think they've been beaten and there haven't been a lot of teams who have come close," Coach Dean said of the loss. "I was really proud of my girls early, they did a good job of getting the ball down the floor and got some shots at the bucket. You know, we're real young and inexperienced so it's good for us to see teams like that so we can get better from it--every game is a learning process."

Reesa Hampton led all scorers with 15 for Marmaduke, while Rileigh Laden had 8 for the junior Lady Cougars in the loss.

"You know, these girls come to play every night," noted Lady Greyhound Coach Smith. "Reesa Hampton had 15, and also handed out 7 assists and Emma Foster had 13, plus pulled down nine rebounds--I thought we did a good job of spreading the scoring around."

Smith noted the unbeaten junior girls have a very good chance of finishing the season in that manner.

"You know we're 21-0 now, and this is one of the better teams we've had in a while and they've got a good chance of running the table--if they continue to improve," he surmised.

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