NORTH LITTLE ROCK — The Bryant White Lady Hornets seventh grade team of Bryant Middle School is ready to play somebody other than the North Little Rock Gold Lady Charging Wildcats.
Both of the Lady Hornets’ games thus far this season have been against the talented Lady Cats and, on Tuesday night, the result was a setback.
In the first meeting on Nov. 29, the Lady Hornets absorbed a 38-22 loss. This time, it was a 40-20 setback.
Gold had a player score 20 points in the initial meeting.
“We knew we would play them again so we adjusted and worked hard the next week in practice on our press offense, getting back on missed shots and staying with our man, especially those players who hurt us the first game,” Lady Hornets coach Ben Perry said.
“Well, we began the game (Tuesday) with two new players we had not seen before starting for North Little Rock,” he continued. “Both were taller than I am and I’m 6’2″. Basically our tallest player came to her shoulder.
“North Little Rock did not have one of their players in the book so we got a technical foul early in the game and got to shoot free throws,” the coach said. “Caitlin LaCerra was able to drain both of those making it a 3-2 game. However, the athleticism and talent of North Little Rock was just too great.”
The Lady Cats built a 13-5 lead in the first quarter with two players other than the one that had 20 in the previous match, combining for 9 of their points. It was 23-7 at the half.
“We had too many turnovers and none of our open shots were falling,” Perry related. “We got into early foul trouble and were not able to close off the lane to the very talented guards of North Little Rock. We were able to hold the player who scored 20 points against us to only 4 points this game. But, even though she didn’t score as much, she destroyed us with her dribble drive and she could either shoot or dish to the open man.”
For Bryant White, LaCerra led with 7 points. Jayla Keith and Zacara Whitcher added 3 apiece. Jordan Hancock, Sara Hudspeth and Emma Chappell scored 2 each. Regan Dillon added a free throw.
“They just out rebounded us on both sides of the ball and we struggled offensively,” Perry said. “It basically boiled down to the fact that they were more talented than us at about every position. Those girls have probably played since they could walk and it showed.
“We did show improvement in our press offense even though we made several mistakes,” he added. “I encouraged the girls and told them that this was the best team they would ever play and I’m glad that we got to play them the first two games of the season. It helped us realize what we must work to get better.
“I am proud of the girls’ effort and I know they will have a great season,” the coach concluded. “Our shots just need to fall and we must work together. We will make adjustments and get the opportunity to work hard against Bethel on Thursday and in the North Little Rock Jamboree on Saturday where we play Sheridan and Sylvan Hills.”