By WILL NORRIS
ANACOCO – Defense, rebounding and making free throws are key for any basketball team to find success. But when one of those is missing, it is very difficult to get the win.
The Anacoco Lady Indians found that out the hard way, missing 12 total free throws as they fell in non-district action Tuesday night to the visiting Zwolle Lady Hawks, 55-53.
“We are improving everyday,” Anacoco head coach Tim Parker said. “The girls are playing really hard, we just missed too many free throws.”
Along with the missed free throws, Anacoco (6-4) suffered through some foul trouble as post player Paige Mayo saw limited minutes, playing maybe half the game before fouling out midway through the fourth period.
After Zwolle (7-3) opened up an early lead with buckets from MaKayla Price and Olivia Sepulvado, the Lady Indians went on a 9-0 run thanks to a trio of three-pointers from Bella Henry. But thanks to Price and Sepulvado, the Lady Hawks fought back to take a 16-12 advantage after the first eight minutes of play.
Zwolle was able to expand its lead to nine points during the second period, but watched Anacoco claw back to within two points on a Bailey Davis three-pointer, a short bucket from Henry and a layup by Ava Davis, cutting the gap to 27-25.
But Price hit back-to-back layups for Zwolle to end the half, giving the Lady Hawks a 31-25 cushion at the intermission.
Mayo returned to the court for only two minutes in the third period and managed to help Anacoco cut the gap to three points. But when she picked up her fourth foul, the Lady Hawks extended their lead back to nine points, only to see Henry hit a three to trim the deficit back to six points at the end of the frame, 45-39.
The Lady Indians continued to claw back into the game and tied it up twice in the fourth, the final time at 49-49 on a basket by Mayo.
Zwolle retook the lead on a three from Sepulvado and held off a late Anacoco rally to prevail by two points.
Sepulvado led all scorers as she poured in 29 points for the Lady Hawks. Price finished with 11 points.
Bailey Davis paced Anacoco with 18 points and 20 rebounds, while Henry finished with 16 points, including four three-pointers.
A 16-point first-half deficit proved to be too much to overcome as the Anacoco Indians dropped their third game in a row on Tuesday night, losing to the Zwolle Hawks, 44-41.
Anacoco (12-3) took the initial lead of the game on a free throw by Emanuel Luzardo. However, that was the last time the Indians led in the game as Zwolle (8-3) got nine points from Kenneth Montgomery to build a 20-6 advantage by the end of the first frame of play.
Montgomery connected on another bucket to give Zwolle its biggest lead of the game at 22-6, but Anacoco finished off the frame with a 9-3 run to close the gap to 10 points at intermission, 25-15.
Dustin Welch and Brayden Prichard connected a couple of early baskets in the second half to get the Indians to within six points, but Zwolle, behind Tyren Thomas, worked back out to a nine-point advantage by the end of the third, 33-24.
But Anacoco refused to go away and closed to within 40-39 on a jumper from Chase Taylor. However, Zwolle connected on 4-of-6 free throws down the stretch to hold on for the victory.
Montgomery led all scorers with 19 points for Zwolle, while Thomas contributed 13 points.
Anacoco got 12 points from Welch and 11 from Luzardo in the loss.
Photo courtesy of SAMANTHA GOODWIN
Anacoco guard Bella Henry scored 16 points, hitting four three-pointers, in the Lady Indians’ 55-53 loss on Tuesday to the Zwolle Lady Hawks.
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