NORTH LITTLE ROCK — After losing their opening game at the North Little Rock Middle School Invitational Tournament earlier this week, the Bryant White Lady Hornets eighth grade team of Bryant Middle School came back to win the next two including an intense struggle on Thursday night against North Little Rock Gold, 24-21.
“It was a very defensive game and we were not hitting a lot of the shots we took,” said Bryant coach Ben Perry. “But I told them to keep taking the open looks and the shots will fall. However, it was a much better team than we played on Tuesday.
“The girls played very hard against a very good North Little Rock team,” he continued. “They never gave up and continued to fight the whole game. They responded very well to everything I said and played as a team once again.”
Kaitlyn Weng led the team in scoring with 10 points. Lauryn Taylor had 8, Rachel Buck 3, Kristyn Weng 2 and Lexi Rose 1.
“Lauryn Taylor dominated the boards on offense and defense,” Perry said. “She must have had over 15 to 20 rebounds, if not more in that game. It always seemed that if the ball didn’t go in the hoop, Lauryn would be there to grab it. She is a great asset to have under the rim.”
The Lady Hornets eked out a 4-3 lead by the end of the first quarter after neither team had scored halfway through the period.
“The girls on both sides were playing with great intensity,” Perry noted. “North Little Rock received a technical foul because of the fact that their book was wrong for the players they had. We made one out of two free throws but despite that advantage we both ended up with 7 additional points in the second quarter.”
So Bryant White’s lead was 11-10 at the half.
“I told the girls at half to keep their intensity up and the score right now is 0-0,” the coach related. “We start all over and they are coming out to press in the second half. They did.
“We were able to advance our lead by one point in the third as we began to press,” he said. “We held them to only one made shot in the paint and one free throw.”
It was 15-13 going into the fourth quarter.
“We stayed true to our defense and, despite some calls that didn’t go our way, we were able score 9 points in the fourth against North Little Rock’s 8.”
Now 2-2 on the season, the Lady Hornets return to action after Thanksgiving, traveling to Lake Hamilton on Monday, Nov. 28.
“It is going to take everything we’ve got especially coming back after a week off,” Perry said. “Lake Hamilton is a good team and they are very well coached.”