Glen Rose High School Lady Tigers head basketball coach Ramsey Ghazal wasn’t really prophetic when he recently stated that the team’s defense was “state-tournament ready.”
Ghazal knew what the sixth-ranked Lady Tigers were capable of on defense, and they kicked it up to an even higher level after that with a school record-setting 58-8 victory over Venus last Friday.
That marked the least points any GRHS varsity girls basketball team has ever allowed. The previous school record for points allowed in a game was 11, which the Lady Tigers accomplished in 2017, also with Ghazal at the helm.
Now, coming off a 42-29 loss to 11th-ranked Bridgeport, the 19-6 Lady Tigers must first prove they are district-ready — and the indications show they may be more than ready.
They GRHS girls are scheduled to open District 7-4A play Friday, Jan. 10, against Brownwood, at home in Tiger Arena.
“It’s going to be a battle,” Ghazal said of the Brownwood matchup. “They’ve got one of the best girls in the district.”
The GRHS coach noted that Brownwood is No. 24 in the state rankings published online by MaxPreps.
Ghazal said that Lady Lion standout scored 29 points Tuesday in a 53-38 win over Graham.
In the preseason rankings published online by the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches, the Lady Tigers were picked to finish as the runner-up to Stephenville, followed by Brownwood and Godley as the four top playoff contenders. Mineral Wells is the fifth member of the district.
The Lady Tigers are No. 6 in the TABC Class 4A rankings released on Monday. That was before their loss to Bridgeport, played Monday afternoon in Glen Rose.
The Texas Girls Coaches Association’s top 25 rankings list Glen Rose 16th in the state and Stephenville 21st.
In the loss to Bridgeport, the GRHS offense was paced by Bree Baker with 14 points. Jeana Douglas was next with eight points, followed by Hailey Ibarra with five and Abby Stephenson had two.
Ghazal noted that the Lady Tigers missed all 19 of their 3-point shot attempts in that 14-point loss, but made 52 percent of their 2-point tries and hit nine of 10 free throws.
Their inside shooting success came despite the presence of Bridgeport’s two tallest players, who stand 6-3 and 6-1.
“We had some breakdowns on some defensive transitions. We scored well on the inside against their tall players. They are a solid team with good guards.”
In the win over Venus last Friday, Hazel Hawkins led the Lady Tigers in scoring with 13 points. Three players — Kora Dodson, Douglas and Baker — scored eight points apiece. Next was Lindsay Andress with six, Hannah Cantwell with three, and Addison Nance and Ibarra with two each.
Next week, district play will continue when the Lady Tigers play at Stephenville (6 p.m.) on Tuesday, Jan. 14.