Both Mountain Home senior high basketball teams face Greene County Tech in their home opener Tuesday night coming off losses to Class 7A competition.
The Bombers suffered from a cold second half and fell 51-31 to the Springdale Bulldogs on Saturday at Springdale, while the Lady Bombers were tied late in their game with the Lady Bulldogs before falling 54-47.
“Giving up size, strength and speed, and being very young — we had one senior on the floor most of the time — I was very impressed and pleased with a lot of things,” Lady Bombers head coach Dell Leonard said of his team’s effort in its season opener.
Leonard felt the determining factor in the game was a lack of blocking out on defense.
“I know they got at least 20 points on putbacks,” he said. “Eliminate half of those and you win the game. They did get some points in transition that we’d like to keep them from getting. We’ll have to do a better job of that in our league. They probably got somewhere from 10 to 12 points in transition we could have prevented.”
The Bombers trailed just 13-11 after a quarter and 24-18 at halftime against the Bulldogs as senior Howie Wehmeyer tossed in 11 first-half points.
But, Springdale held Wehmeyer to just three in the second half and outscored Mountain Home 27-13 in the second half to pull away for the victory.
Wehmeyer led Mountain Home with 14 points, while Mitch McDonald added nine on three 3-pointers, Austin Jacobelli and Bodie Cotter scored three apiece and Garrett Dietsche chipped in two for the Bombers.
Devon Young led Springdale with 10 points.
The Lady Bombers trailed 14-8 after one quarter, but rallied to a 24-24 tie at halftime and a 35-35 tie after three quarters.
“We know we have to get a lot better defensively,” Leonard said, “but there’s no excuse for getting beat that bad on offensive boards, and there’s no excuse for getting beat down the floor like that. Those things aside, I thought our basketball team went out and competed very hard, and they showed a lot of people that they can compete on the highest level.”
Sophomore Hannah Pfeifer led a balanced Mountain Home offense with 13 points, while senior Cassie Martin added 11, Vinessa Daniel totaled eight, Maly Tabor scored six, Alivia O’Brien notched five, Micah Hudson tallied three and Riley Walker chipped in one.
“We have a group of girls who work extremely hard every day,” Leonard said, “and I think the film room has helped a lot and allowed them to see some things we’ve been saying.”
Chasidee Owens led Springdale with 19 points and Kierra Lang added 13.
Mountain Home meets Greene County Tech at The Hangar with junior varsity action beginning at 5 p.m. Leonard believes the Lady Eagles are one of the favorites in Class 5A this season.
“They’re a lot like us,” he said. “They have a really talented sophomore class. I know our sophomore class and theirs have gone head-to-head for several years. I don’t think our sophomores have ever beaten them in seventh, eighth or ninth grade. I think they’ll have a really good shot at winning 5A this year.”