Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Woods, Patterson shine late as Lady Eagles beat Texas 4A No. 7 Amarillo

Brad Cox/News-Sun
Hobbs' Halle Woods goes up for two of her 21 points
against Amarillo High on Monday at Tasker Arena.
  While the Hobbs girls basketball team is fresh off two consecutive Class 5A state semifinal appearances and return a solid corps group in senior guard Mackenzie Latimer and junior posts Danielle Patterson and Halle Woods, the Lady Eagles lost some key pieces and there were giant question marks heading into the season.
  Hobbs answered some of those questions Monday with an impressive 53-49 victory over Texas Class 4A No. 7 Amarillo High at Tasker Arena.
  Though it's just one win, the Lady Eagles (now 3-0) showed they have what it takes to take on (and beat) a top-notch basketball team. Amarillo had size (well taller than Hobbs), good guard play and tall wings capable of knocking down perimeter shots.
  But Hobbs blitzed the Lady Sandies, taking a 15-2 lead as Amarillo looked far from a top team in Texas in the opening minutes.
  The Lady Sandies gained traction, however, as they eventually took a lead in the third quarter. The teams battled from there, and while it would've been easy for Hobbs to fold after Amarillo battled all the way back and had the momentum, the Lady Eagles instead went to their bread and butter – its post game.
  Woods and Patterson scored 18 of the last 19 points for Hobbs, including key baskets and free throws down the stretch.
  Woods finished with an impressive 21 points and 10 rebounds in arguably her best game of her career (she's been on varsity since her freshman season). The 5-foot-11 Woods appears to have gained confidence and is starting to play with the potential she has to be one of the better players in New Mexico as she battled the taller Amarillo posts (one, I believe was over 6-foot-2). If she can avoid foul trouble (something she's prone to get into) she'll have more games like Monday's contest throughout the the season.
  Patterson was the reliable player she's been since a freshman, putting together 13 points and six rebounds despite foul trouble herself. She's listed at 5-foot-9 (and I'm not sure if she's even that tall), but she plays like a 6-footer in the paint with a unique ability to get her shot off despite usually having someone at least a few inches taller on her.
  Plenty of others gave the Lady Eagles good minutes as well (5-foot-3 sophomore Ariel Lopez, in particular, gave Hobbs a huge spark with her energy).
  Hobbs was able to do this despite Latimer going 1-for-6 from the field and finishing with just two points. But even when Latimer isn't scoring, she's the glue that keeps the team together on the court and makes plays that usually don't show in the stats. Hobbs doesn't win Monday without her on the court.
  It won't get much easier for Hobbs as the Lady Eagles play Texas Class 4A No. 15 Amarillo Palo Duro on Tuesday at Tasker Arena.