By DANNY P. SMITH
MABEN – How can a Class A girls basketball team defeat one from Class 4A?
East Oktibbeha coach Pam Roberts saw the formula to make it happen on Friday night.
The Lady Titans had four different players score in double digits and that was enough to register a 65-62 victory against the Aberdeen Lady Bulldogs at the West Oktibbeha Christmas Shootout.
Quanisha Doss led East Oktibbeha with 21 points and was followed by Alexis Henderson with 15 points, Lydia Stevenson with 13 points and Savannah Blair with 10 points.
Roberts said getting that kind of production against a bigger school can only help the Lady Titans on down the road.
"It's exciting for the girls," Roberts said. "It should boost their moral and encourage them to go on and be a better team. We're working every day and they've got their own little motto and that's teamwork. We're keeping that motto and following along with that."
East Oktibbeha, which improved to 5-6 overall, held a one-point lead of 30-29 at halftime, but saw Aberdeen take the advantage at 31-30 and 37-36 during the third quarter.
With the game tied 38-38 at the 4-minute mark of the third quarter after a basket by Sade Walker, the Lady Titans went on a 13-0 run to secure a 51-38 lead with 1:17 left in the third.
"The girls played hard and played tight defense," Roberts said. "We were proud of them being able to hold them in tact and not letting them score."
East Oktibbeha held a 53-40 advantage after three quarters and held on for the three-point victory despite a strong comeback attempt by the Lady Bulldogs.
"We were trying to get them to move the basketball across the halfcourt line," Roberts said. "We told them at 20 seconds to get the ball up, spread it around and spread it around the court. They decided to play a different defense on us and they tied us up, but we managed to pull through."
East Oktibbeha was able to survive the 31-point effort by Aberdeen's Walker.
The Lady Titans play county rival West Oktibbeha tonight.
West Oktibbeha 76,
West Lowndes 34
MABEN – The Lady Timberwolves bounced back from a tough loss to open up their tournament in style.
Jaslyne Bedford lead her team with 18 points and 12 rebounds. She has been the constant for head coach Marcus Johnson and he needed her to step up.
Brittany Jones added 14 points for West Oktibbeha.
West Oktibbeha 78,
West Lowndes 53
MABEN – The Timberwolves were without their leading scorer Kendrin Yates but that did not slow them down.
Yates, who has been under the weather, was held out by head coach Danny Crawford. West Oktibbeha had several players step up and fill the void.
Lavontis Smith led the way with 16 points for the Timberwolves, while Dantaveous Crawford had 14 points.
West Oktibbeha will battle rival East Oktibbeha tonight.