The Hillgrove Hawks and Lady Hawks had their home basketball opener last night (11/12/19), hosting the Hiram Hornets. The Lady Hawks played first, starting at 6 PM to a well-attended home gymnasium.
After the first quarter of play, both teams seemed to settle in a bit, having exorcised their season-opener jitters. It was mostly back and forth in the first two quarters, with neither team showing much dominance. In fact, both teams stepped up their game in a late second quarter scoring spree, which ended the half with the Hornets breaking a 17-17 stalemate off a long three-point jumper and a foul shot. The half ended with a score of 21-17, Hiram.
The second half for the Lady Hawks was impressive as far point-scoring went, but fouls killed any momentum the Lady Hawks would gather. The game remained close throughout the second half, thanks to strong play from the bench. The game came down to the wire, being settled on the foul line, with the Hornets coming out on top 44-43.
The Boys game started much differently. The Hawks jumped out to a quick 9-0 start on the Hornets, but then allowed Hiram to score ten points on them to end the first quarter down 10-9. A back and forth second quarter and a trio of three-pointers from the Hawk offense ended the half with a neck-and-neck score of 19-20. However, it would be the last time the Hawks would have the lead for the remainder of the game.
The second half was all Hornets, with outside shooting accuracy and inside penetration that wore down the Hawk defense. The third quarter saw the Hornets pull away to end the quarter with a ten point lead, 37-27. The fourth was more of the same, with the Hornets taking more shooting opportunities and draining 3-pointers to end the game 55-34.
Head Coach Edward Morris was optimistic with his team’s performance though: “Only one kid on the floor had varsity experience, so this was a good test for us against a good athletic team. And now we gauge and work to get better and move forward from here.”
The Hawks next game is also at home, with Hillgrove hosting the Osborne Cardinals on Saturday, November 16, 2019.