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Heritage Academy, Oak Hill Academy split in basketball

 

Danny P Smith

 

WEST POINT -- Oak Hill Academy girls basketball coach Stan Hughey didn''t like what he saw early in Monday night''s game against Heritage Academy. 

 

Hughey wasn''t pleased with the way his squad was playing on both ends of the floor, and he didn''t wait too long before delivering his message. 

 

After the Lady Patriots built a 7-4 lead, Hughey called a timeout with 4 minutes, 45 seconds left in the first quarter to get his players'' attention. 

 

"I didn''t think some of them were as focused as we needed to be defensively on recognizing who we needed to stop," Hughey said. "We didn''t do a good job with that and got switched off. We don''t really switch stuff." 

 

Oak Hill Academy responded to Hughey''s challenge with an 8-0 run after the timeout to take a 12-7 advantage and went on to a 58-45 victory. 

 

Hughey called the timeout because he didn''t feel the Lady Raiders were doing a good enough job contesting the shots of Madison Ford, who had four of the Lady Patriots'' first seven points. 

 

Hughey also wasn''t getting what he wanted from his players on offense. 

 

"I wasn''t really happy with our intensity and the offenses we were running," Hughey said. "We weren''t having any second options." 

 

Hughey found out later he really only needed one. 

 

Sophomore Tori Ellis (19 points) ignited the 8-0 run with a couple of baskets. 

 

Hughey said Ellis is a "basketball junkie" who spent two straight weeks at a University of Mississippi basketball camp to improve her game. 

 

"Tori really wants to be good," Hughey said. "She won the hot-shot competition at the (Ole Miss) Elite Camp out of 60-something girls." 

 

Hughey also was pleased with Ellis'' defense. 

 

"Tori has really grown up as far as wanting to take on defensive responsibilities," Hughey said. "She played really good defense for us tonight." 

 

Although Ford scored 29 points for the Lady Patriots (5-10), she was Heritage Academy''s only player in double digits. 

 

"Madison is a special player and she does so much for us," Heritage Academy coach Bruce Allsup said. "We''ve got to have some people step up and help her out. I told the girls after the game they''ve got to step their play up. Hopefully, they''ll answer the call." 

 

Also for the Lady Raiders (11-6), Megan Holton scored 16 points and Bonnie Riley had 10. 

 

n Heritage Academy 50, Oak Hill 37 Academy (B): The Patriots led by as many as 21 points, 39-18, in the third quarter and held on. 

 

Heritage Academy (9-4) built a 14-8 advantage after the first quarter and extended it to 26-12 by halftime. 

 

After having their biggest lead, the Patriots watched the Raiders cut the margin to 41-36 with five minutes remaining. 

 

"I was very disappointed with the way we finished the ballgame," Allsup said. "We just didn''t value the basketball. We''ve lost a couple of games for not wanting to value the basketball, and until we learn that lesson, it''s going to be hard to win when it gets crunch time. That''s something we''ve got to correct." 

 

A three-point play by Cole Walker and two baskets by Justin Frye, one a 3-pointer, provided the winning margin. 

 

"We played some good minutes in spurts and did some good things in the first half, but I was really frustrated by not finishing the game off," Allsup said. 

 

Tyler White had 11 points for the Patriots, who play host to Starkville Academy tonight. 

 

For Oak Hill (4-10), Steven Jones scored 15 points and Zack Bryan added 10, but it wasn''t enough for coach Brian Middleton. 

 

"We dug a hole and gave up too many offensive rebounds," Middleton said. "I thought the boys played hard and finally shot the ball decent at the end. We''ve got some pretty good shooters, but just weren''t hitting early."

 

 

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