, Muskogee, OK

December 18, 2013

Hilldale splits at Catoosa

Phoenix Staff Reports

— Second quarters haven’t been kind to Hilldale of late.

The Hornets were outscored 18-7 in the second to fall behind 12 at the half and lost 62-54 at Catoosa on Tuesday.

It was a different misfortune in the loss to Locust Grove on Saturday when starting two-guard Hunter Howe went out with a knee injury. The leading scorer up to that point, his absence hurt in that loss.

It was missed Tuesday as well.

“He’s averaging 10-11 points in two games and we lose by eight,” Hilldale coach Jeremy Rogers said. “We outscore them in the other three quarters combined tonight.

“But what didn’t go wrong in the second — we missed too many easy shots, had too many turnovers that were turned into easy baskets. They were bigger than us so we got outrebounded but we’re not going to be bigger than anyone that’s going to be a challenge every game.”

Derek Altman had 14 points for Hilldale (1-2), which  has lost two straight since opening with a win against Wagoner. Bill Muse Jr. had 11 as did Grant Sikes coming off the bench.

“All three of those guys played well,” Rogers said. “Bill has had 11 three straight games. We’re going to have to make up for what we’re missing with Hunter.”

Hilldale 43,

Catoosa 35

Hilldale (2-1) rebounded from a draining loss at Locust Grove in a makeup game Saturday, jumping out to a 16-9 first-quarter lead and controlling the contest from there.

“We had a pretty good start but we got bogged down a little bit offensively,” said Hilldale coach Scott Hensley. “They played pretty good defense, we played pretty good defense. We just had some mistakes, turnovers, making passes that don’t need to be made, things that will hurt us if we don’t get them corrected.”

Hilldale led 21-15 at the half and by four, 31-27, before stretching it back out.

Katie Kirkhart had 15 points, the lone double-figure scorer for the Lady Hornets. Emily Dowdy had 7 points and Cassidy Mills and Kenzie Mize had 6 each.

Both Hilldale teams are at Fort Gibson on Friday.