Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Inexperience, resiliency shows in Hobbs' double-OT win at Odessa High

Clayton Jones/News-Sun
Hobbs' Adrian Brown goes up for two points
against Odessa High on Tuesday in Odessa.
  First, my apologies for not updating the ole' blog lately. With fall sports ending, winter sports beginning and other things going on, it's been difficult to find time to update my labor of love. However, I should get back into the swing of things now.
  Now to why you really clicked on this, the Hobbs boys basketball team's 86-83 double-overtime victory over Odessa High on Tuesday in Odessa.
  The Eagles were lucky to walk away with this one, especially considering this likely should've been a 25-30 point victory. Up 21 points midway through the third quarter and pressing the socks off Odessa, Hobbs should've had no problems closing this one out. Even up 10 points with 2:20 left, the Eagles should've wrapped this one up.
  Instead, Odessa High stuck around, started shooting the lights out and gave the Eagles a scare before Hobbs put the Bronchos away in the second overtime.
  While things such as foul shooting (19-for-38) and turnovers (28) are easy to point to as to what went wrong, the simplest explanation for the near collapse is inexperience.
  Hobbs features just one starter back (Dane Pannell) from last season's 20-9 team. Outside of him, not many of this season's players were playing the crucial minutes down the stretch for the Eagles a season ago.
  This team is more talented and deeper than last season's squad. But things like blowing a 21-point lead in the second half are some of the growing pains that come with having a team that doesn't have a ton of varsity experience. They're going to need to learn to close games out, particularly on the road.
  Not to sound like glass-half-full guy, but Hobbs winning this game on the road with Odessa High having all the momentum in the world heading into overtime is impressive. To be honest, I didn't think the Eagles were going to pull through. Despite playing bad down the stretch, Hobbs found a way to win – something good teams do.
  Hobbs should have plenty of motivation come Friday, not only because it's the Eagles' home opener, but because they play an Odessa Permian team that thumped them 65-42 last season in Odessa – Hobbs' lowest point total since a 43-41 loss to Gadsden on Jan. 10, 2006.