A week of frustration mounted for Ryan’s girls late in the fourth quarter of Friday’s District 5-5A game against Hebron.
For the second time this week, the Lady Raiders were held scoreless for a quarter. Hebron capitalized on Ryan’s scoring drought in the second period and rolled to a 44-26 victory at Billy Ryan Gym.
“I think so much of this is intrinsic and really, really wanting to,” Ryan coach Monesha Allen said. “We need a happy medium — some intrinsic motivation slash control and knowing how to score. Right now, those two are not meeting.”
Entering the contest, Ryan (7-16, 2-5 district) held a one-game lead over Lewisville for the fourth and final playoff spot in the district. Lewisville played district leader Flower Mound Marcus on Friday night.
Hebron junior guard Grace Pospichal led all scorers with 12 points.
The Lady Raiders were led by junior forward Carissa Sanders’ 11 points. Sophomore forward Sydney Lundgren chipped in with six points.
Behind a 3-pointer and a free throw by Sanders, Ryan led Hebron 6-2 before the Lady Hawks ripped off 13 straight points.
“We just never got into the swing of the game,” Hebron coach Debra Manley said. “We were kind of dead-footed, but we played our way out of it.”
The Lady Hawks (16-7, 5-2) held Ryan scoreless in the second quarter and trailed 15-6 at halftime after only hitting two field goals in the opening 16 minutes.
Ryan continued to struggle throughout the contest. Sanders and Ashtyn Lovett were whistled for technical fouls in the second half, something Allen was very displeased with after the game.
“It definitely was frustration, and you have to learn how to control that, just like you’re trying to go score and you throw it off the backboard,” Allen said. “You have to be able to control that, and we’re not.”
The Lady Raiders only have three games left in district play, including games against Lewisville and Coppell, the two teams beneath Ryan in the standings.
“We have two huge games in front of us,” Allen said. “We’re going to have to more or less forget about tonight and erase tonight so that we come back with a clean slate to get those victories.”
Hebron 51, Ryan 32
Hebron’s height advantage took its toll on the Raiders in the second half.
The Hawks fed senior center Conner McClenaghan often in the third quarter, and the 6-foot-9-inch senior capitalized on his extra inches. He scored eight of his game-high 14 points in the quarter and kept Ryan winless in District 5-5A play.
“We’ve been at a loss all year long when it comes to the aspect of having a big,” Ryan coach Bryce Overstreet said. “Our bigs are 6-2, 6-3. He made a difference for sure in the third quarter.”
The Raiders (6-15, 0-5) were led by junior guard Ibrahim Logan’s nine points and junior guard A.J. Hill’s eight points.
Ryan hung around with Hebron (18-7, 4-1) in the first half and trailed 13-11 after a layup by senior guard Trent Willis. But Hebron slowly increased the buffer and took a 21-13 lead into halftime.
In the final seconds of the half, Overstreet feverishly went up and down the sideline, urging his team to pick up a final defensive stop.
The Raiders succeeded and Overstreet pumped his fist as the assistant coaches clapped and headed to the locker room. For Overstreet and the rest of the team, it was a positive step for a team looking to snap a 15-game losing streak in district play.
“We’ve been talking to these kids all year long about making progress, and I feel like tonight we got better,” Overstreet said. “It showed in the first half.”
BEN BABY can be reached at 940-566-6869 and via Twitter at @Ben_Baby.
Hebron 44, Ryan 26
Hebron (16-7, 5-2) — Maddie Brown 7 , Grace Pospichal 12, Victoria Miller 7, Kristen Cunningham 6, Molly Pospichal 6, Mary Leigh Rock 11.
Ryan (7-16, 2-5)— Carissa Sanders 11, Faith Pittman 2, Sydney Lundgren 6, Mariah Young 4, Ashtyn Lovett 2, Kimani Henderson 1.
Hebron 51, Ryan 32
Hebron (18-7, 4-1) — Logan Lubke 6, Jeremy Hicks 1, Tyler Williams 10, Timothy Hart 4, Justin Montgomery 3, Conner McClenaghan 14, Austin Enloe 8, Isaiah Gray 3, LaRandall Scroggins 2.
Ryan (6-15, 0-5)— Xavier Gray 2, De’ Parks 2, Zach Brooks 5, Trent Willis 4, Xavier Pittman 2, Ibrahim Logan 9, A.J. Hill 8.