Lady Tigers' defense suffocates visiting West Lady Trojans

Travis M. Smith | @travis5mith Managing Editor

GLEN ROSE – In the last game before the Thanksgiving break, the Glen Rose Lady Tigers offense scored just enough to allow the defense to control the majority of the 22-18 home win over West.

“We played them last year and their bigs hurt us inside, so we talked about how we were going to play man, but had to have good help on the help side,” Lady Tigers Head Coach Sheree Hill said. “I thought we did a pretty good job in there, and I thought Madi Gibson did a really good job defensively of not letting them get the ball in there and slapping some passes down.

“We also had some good help in there defensively from Presley and Ally. Defensively, I am happy, but offensively we have a lot of work to do. We just are not comfortable shooting the ball yet.”

Fast-forward to the second half. With just over three minutes to play in the third and the Lady Tigers up five, Ally Andress drove the left baseline and scored on a nifty, up-and-under layup. The basket put Glen Rose up 17-10 with 3:14 to go in the quarter.

The score held as the teams headed into the final eight minutes of regulation.

Gibson’s three from the top of the arc broke the game’s four-and-a-half minute scoreless drought and gave the Lady Tigers a double-digit cushion, 20-10. The senior forward was fouled in the lane a few possessions later and knocked down both of her attempts at the line.

Abigail McKenzie scored in the lane for the Lady Trojans after grabbing an offensive rebound, and then converted both of her free throws for West after entering the bonus. The buckets closed the Glen Rose lead to seven, 22-15, with 2:51 to play.

Heading under a minute to play and the Lady Tigers leading by six, West controlled the ball for the next 42 seconds, but the suffocating Glen Rose defense did not allow a single, clean shot attempt. Kearstyn Woodard knocked down two free throws with 9.82 seconds left to pull within four, but it was too little too late, and the Lady Tigers held on to a hard fought 22-18 home victory.

Hill said the Lady Tigers will have to improve mentally over the Thanksgiving break if they want to improve offensively, because the only way to fix the current offensive woes are by “a lot of shooting and a lot of confidence.”

The junior varsity team was also in action last Tuesday, but fell on the wrong side of a double-overtime thriller to West, 29-25. A seven-to-three-fourth-quarter run knotted the Lady Tigers and Lady Trojans at 21 at the end of regulation. However, Glen Rose missed all four free throw attempts in the second overtime frame, while West converted all four of its attempts at the line and came up just short on its home court.

The Lady Tigers returned to action on Tuesday, Dec. 1 in Stephenville against the Lady Jackets.