Busy week just before break
It was a busy and successful week for the Lady Rebels, as Highland went 2-1 with a win over Trumann, 49-27, at home on Dec. 14, another win at Brookland, 52-33, on Dec. 16, and a loss to conference leader Pocahontas, 62-44, at the A.L. Hutson Memorial Center on Dec. 17.
The boys' only game of the week was loss at Pocahontas, 64-43, on Dec. 13.
Both teams do not play again until after Christmas.
"It's a long grueling stretch from the NEA tournament to the end of the season, so I think a break will be good," said Lady Rebel Head Coach Harlan Davis.
The Redskins used a 12-4 run in the middle of the first quarter in the Dec. 13 game to jump out to a 16-7 lead, but Sterling Stowers hit a trey and a bucket to cut the Pocahontas lead to 16-12.
Highland, who held a 3-2 lead early in the game, regained it early in the second when Jason Long, Brad Harris and Brandon Ariola combined for six points and an 18-16 advantage.
Pocahontas outscored the Rebels 18-8 the rest of the way for a 34-26 halftime lead.
The Redskins started the third with a 8-0 run and the Rebs managed only six points to make the score 55-32 after three.
Stowers led Highland (2-6, 0-4) with 11 and Harris and Long had five points each.
The Lady Rebels' experience with Pocahontas was similar, except their bad quarter was the second instead of the third.
Pocahontas started the game 13-4, but Alex Isaacs and Natalie McCandless combined for six points and finished down 17-10 after one.
It took until mid-quarter before Whitney Davis hit a 3-pointer for Highland's first points to make the score 28-13.
She hit the one of two free throw chances about a minute later to complete the Lady Reb scoring for the quarter. Pocahontas led 36-14 at halftime.
"I was disappointed in the first half, because we talked about doing some things offensively, of compacting our offense and being able to sharpen our offense up. I thought that would bring our scoring up. We didn't do very good at that," explained Davis. "In the second half, we did that and we scored 30."
Highland outscored Pocahontas the rest of the way, but the Lady Redskins spread the floor to shorten the game, giving the Lady Rebels fewer chances.
Bobie Jo Cooper led the offense with six points in the third quarter and cut the deficit to 47-28.
Isaacs put in seven points in the fourth, but Pocahontas made enough shots and free throws to keep Highland at a distance.
"Maybe we can learn that when we do the things that we can do, we can be pretty competitive," said Davis. "Pocahontas has proven they are the best team in the conference -- so far."
The Lady Rebels started the week by jumping on Trumann early and not letting up.
Isaacs had six of her 16 points to lead Highland to a 14-4 first quarter lead, and then Davis had two three-pointers and 10 of her 15 points to help extend it to 33-12 at halftime.
Even though the Lady Wildcats started the third with a 7-5 run, Highland held Trumann scoreless until the end to get out of the quarter up, 46-21.
It's been since the AAA expanded the classifications that Highland has faced Brookland in any sport. With the Lady Bearcats moving up to 4A this year, they are back in Highland's conference.
The Lady Rebs (5-5, 3-2) outscored Brookland 14-11 in the first and 12-4 in the second for a 26-15 halftime lead. Highland led 41-24 after three.
Cooper led the team with 16 and Isaacs added 14.