Despite allowing 36 points to Reservoir’s Tiffany Hooker, the Howard girls basketball team didn’t rely on heroics from a single player to defeat the Gators.
Four Howard players scored in double figures on Wednesday to lead the undefeated Lions to a 68-63 home victory over the Gators. Howard head coach Scott Robinson and Lions Anii Harris and Gabby Scott all described the game as a “team win.”
"I think everybody who played contributed in some way," Robinson said. "We did a lot of little things, and it was a great team victory.”
Gabby Scott talks Howard girls basketball after the Lions' 68-63 win over Reservoir on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020.
Heading into the season, the Lions expected to have a balanced scoring output, with senior guards Anii Harris, Marisa Sanchez-Henry and Camille Malagar and sophomore forward Gabby Scott leading the way. That was the case Wednesday, as Harris and Sanchez-Henry scored 17 points apiece and Malagar and Scott each chipped in with 12 points.
“Honestly, it was a good team win,” Harris said. “We all got it done. We all scored, and we all rebounded. I’m proud of our team.”
Reservoir head coach Deb Taylor said the Lions’ ability to score from all five players at all three levels makes them difficult to defend.
“We’re so close, but Howard can score from all five positions, and that makes them really hard to guard,” Taylor said. “Malagar and Harris and even (Emily) Durkee scoring well in the first half and then our little adjustments stopped them, but then Scott and Sanchez-Henry stepped up. Winning that many county championships gives them the confidence. That’s where we’re getting, but we’re not quite there yet.”
Entering the contest Wednesday, Hooker, the Gators’ senior point guard, was averaging a gaudy 30.1 points per game, which leads the county by about 10 points. If a team were going to cool down Hooker’s scoring streak of seven straight games with 24-plus points, it would be Howard. The Lions couldn’t slow down the Gators’ star, though, as Hooker scored 36 points — 25 of which came in the second half — on 12-of-22 shooting and 7 of 8 from the foul line. Fifteen of Hooker’s points came from behind the arc, as she made 5 of her 12 3-point attempts.
“That was an unbelievable performance from Tiffany Hooker,” Robinson said. “She’s got such great speed. We tried to rotate different girls on her, and we tried to prevent her from getting the ball. The thing that makes her so good is she has such range on her shot.”
Reservoir (3-2, 6-2) opened the game at Howard High School with an efficient first eight minutes. Hooker scored eight points, and the Gators led 18-14 at the end of the first period.
Howard took a small lead in the second quarter and ended the first half with a 30-27 lead. Malagar paced the Lions with 10 points in the first half.
Scott then led Howard with eight points in the Lions’ 21-point third quarter. Coming of her worst scoring game of the season (two points against Marriotts Ridge on Jan. 3), Scott was key for the Lions down low. She made 6 of 11 shots from the field, grabbed several important rebounds and blocked three shots.
“I knew that I had to stay focused, since I haven’t been playing as well as I can,” Scott said. “I had to just play my game.”
“We made a point at halftime that we wanted her to get the ball,” Robinson said. “We felt like she could do some damage, and she did.”
Harris and Sanchez-Henry then came through in the clutch for the Lions in the final period. Harris scored eight points in the quarter, including making all four of her free-throw attempts, and Sanchez-Henry chipped in with six points.
“We had to finish it and close it out, and I knew I had to make those clutch free throws,” Harris said.
“Anii is a money player,” Robinson. “Her making those (free throws) in the fourth quarter doesn’t surprise me at all.”
Hooker picked up her fourth foul in the third quarter and was forced to sit some of the final 10 minutes, but she played most of it. Without a foul to give, Hooker couldn’t play a high level of defense with the chance of fouling out.
“When you’re playing that many minutes and as hard as she does, you’re going to pick up some fouls,” Taylor said. “But there were two fouls she picked up that she can’t (commit). … That’s where she’s got to grow. She’s got to realize that her value is getting through the first half without two or more fouls, because that does limit us defensively.”
Both teams are back in action Friday before taking part in the Public vs. Private challenge at McDonogh. Howard travels to Mt. Hebron Friday, while Reservoir hosts River Hill.
Howard 68, Reservoir 63
Ho (5-0, 10-0): A. Harris 17, M. Sanchez-Henry 17, C. Malagar 12, G. Scott 12, E. Durkee 8.
Re (3-2, 6-2): T. Hooker 36, K. Abunassar 11, A. Pennington 6, D. Moultrie 4, L. Hardie 4, M. Davis 2.
Glenelg Country 46, Garrison Forest 25
The non-league win improves the Dragons’ record to 6-4. The win is the first second straight triumph the Dragons have achieved all season. Three Dragons scored in double digits, as Blair Byrne, Caroline Haynes and Ashlyn Bender tallied 15, 13 and 11 points, respectively. After heading into halftime up 22-17, GCS outscored Garrison Forest 21-2 in the third quarter.
GCS (3-1, 6-4): B. Byrne 15, C. Haynes 13, A. Bender 11, N. O’Ferrall 4, L. Doreen 2, C. Lisk 1.
Halftime: 22-17, GCS
Marriotts Ridge 58, Hammond 21
The Mustangs outscored Hammond 21-6 in the first quarter and never looked back. Eleven different Mustangs scored in the triumph, with Emma Morath leading the way with 13 points. Marriotts Ridge pulled away in the second quarter when the Mustangs held Hammond to one point. Jocelyn Fogle led the Golden Bears with six points, nine rebounds and three assists.
MR (3-2, 8-3): E. Morath 13, E. Miller 9, C. Crawford 9, N. Held 6, A. Windsor 6, K. Bryan 4, O. Mahon 3, M. Lee 2, M. Ryan 2, L. Schanck 2, C. Delmonte 2.
Ha (2-4, 3-7): J. Fogle 6, M. Woodson 4, K. Beahm 3, M. Newby 2, R. Smoot 2, D. Britt 2, K. Brown 2.
Halftime: 30-7, MR
Atholton 54, Glenelg 31
Atholton outscored Glenelg 21-4 in the first quarter en route to their first county win of the season. Two days after scoring a career-high 23 points against Glenelg Country, Atholton’s Laila Cowsette matched the number in the win over Glenelg with four 3-pointers.
A (1-4, 2-7): L. Cowsette 23, M. Hargrett 10, M. McCabe 6, N. Blair 6, E. Morton 3, T. Kidd 3, A. Barker 2, K. Brown 1.
G (1-5, 3-6): L. LaPointe 12, A. Gillespie 8, J. Hirsch 4, M. Sloan 4, L. Davis 2, K. Cook 1.
Halftime: 33-16, A
River Hill 61, Mt. Hebron 38
The Hawks sped out to a 30-11 lead in the first half en route to the country triumph. Anhyia Smith led River Hill with 17 points, 13 of which came in the first half. Saniha Jackson and Kennedy Clark both chipped in with 16 and 10 points, respectively. Mt. Hebron’s Tori Valentine scored 24 of Mt. Hebron’s 38 points.
RH (6-0, 8-3): A. Smith 17, S. Jackson 16, K. Clark 10, E. Devine 9, C. Duffy 7, A. Thompson 2.
MH (3-2, 5-4): T. Valentine 24, N. Bodziak 4, A. Harrington 3, R. Vidal 3, E. Dixon 2, A. Unkenholz 2.
Halftime: 30-11, RH
Oakland Mills 64, Long Reach 29
The Scorpions sprinted out to a 41-14 lead at halftime en route to a blowout win over Long Reach. The triumph gets Oakland Mills back to .500 in county play. Jazmine Washington led all scorers with 25 points, 18 of which came in the Scorps’ big second quarter. Jaidyn Harris chipped in with 13 points for Oakland Mills. Tamir Whittle continued to be a bright spot for the winless Lightning. The freshman scored a career-high 14 points in the loss.
OM (2-2, 6-4): J. Washington 25, J. Harris 13, K. Browne 6, R. Fairbanks 6, T. McDuffie 4, I. McDuffie 3, S. Novak 3, D. Chisholm 2, H. Barham 2.
LR (0-5, 0-8): T. Whittle 14, A. Nagle 4, S. Sims 4, J. Putman 3, R. Baldwin 2, R. McDaniel 2.
Halftime: 41-14, OM
Centennial 42, Wilde Lake 32
The Eagles dominated the fourth quarter in the close contest. Wilde Lake led by one point at halftime and trailed by only one point entering the fourth quarter, but Centennial opened the final period on a 6-0 run en route to the victory. After being shut out in the first half, Eagles senior Brook Anderson made five 3s and scored 16 points in the second half. Mia Swaby-Rowe led the Wildecats with nine points and 10 rebounds.
C (3-2, 4-5): B. Anderson 16, O. Reese 9, T. Pearson 8, O. Jackson 4, L. Pellegrini 4, S. Sopchick 1.
WL (2-2, 3-4): M. Swaby-Rowe 9, C. Zimmerman 9, K. Corkeron 7, B. Floyd 6, N. Brown 1.