Houston Middle School’s two girls basketball teams each had five games under their belts as of the beginning of this week.
The Lady Tigers’ A Team and B Team are both coached by Jim Moore and consist of a mix of seventh and eighth-grade players.
The A Team got things rolling with a 26-22 overtime win over Licking in the first round of the Mountain Grove Tournament. Angie Smith led the Lady Tigers in scoring with 14 points, while MiKendra Ramsey had 6 points and Kelsey Prtichett added 4.
Houston scored 4 points in overtime while holding Licking scoreless.
“Our defense won us the game as we were able to pressure the ball and create several turnovers,” Moore said.
In a semifinal matchup in the tournament, the HMS A Team fell to Thayer, 21-14, with Smith scoring 10 points.
“We struggled to score against their zone and missed many good opportunities,” Moore said.
In a home game Nov. 18 against Willow Springs, the Lady Tigers’ A Team prevailed, 37-34.
Smith again led Houston in scoring with 24 points, while Micah Chipps had 6.
In another home game on Nov. 21, the Houston A bunch beat Mountain Grove, 41-32.
Smith continued her torrid scoring pace with 29 points, while also doling out 3 assists.
“After a slow start once again, we were able to pick up our defensive pressure and pick up the pace of the game,” Moore said.
The following night, the A Team Lady Tigers routed Ava, 51-25. Smith poured in 38 points in the victory.
“We played really well getting the back out in transition and attacking their 2-3 zone,” Moore said. “Defensively, we were able to get them out of their offense with our pressure.”
After losing to Licking and Thayer by wide margins in the Mountain Grove Tournament, the HMS B Team regrouped and beat Willow Springs, 19-13.
Sophia Crites scored 8 points to lead the Lady Tigers, while Chipps and Lacey Cavaness had 4 apiece.
Against Mountain Grove, the B squad fell 31-19.
Crites led Houston scorers with 6 points, while Cavaness had 5 and Kaitlynne Garnica and Morgan McKinney each added 3.
In their best outing of the busy stretch, the B Lady Tigers beat Ava, 24-14.
Crites scored 12 points for Houston (6 in each half), while Chipps, Cavaness and McKinney each had 4.
Houston failed to score in the first quarter, but led 9-6 at halftime after Ava went scoreless in the second period.
The HMS teams travelled to Liberty on Tuesday of this week and next week will host Licking on Monday and Cabool on Thursday.