Hickman girls basketball standout Yvonne Anderson looked small on the court Monday when the Kewpies hosted Kirksville. But her height disadvantage didn’t prevent her from scoring 31 points.
Anderson’s scoring pushed Hickman to a 72-52 win over the Lady Tigers.
Anderson, a 5-foot-7 junior who scored 19 points in the first half, faced Kirksville (8-5) players who were two to seven inches taller. Lady Tigers senior Courtney McCartney’s 6-foot-2 frame towered over Anderson on the court.
Anderson’s taller teammates leveled the field some. Hickman junior Miriam Tesfamikael is 5 feet 11, and sophomore Chasity Prince and senior Shana White are 5 feet 10.
But they all looked small compared to McCartney and her teammate Laurel Wichmann, a 6-foot sophomore. The height difference meant that the Kewpies (13-1) needed to re-work their offensive strategy a little.
“We tried to push them out on offense,” Anderson said. “To open the floor up for driving.”
In previous games, Anderson worked on getting her teammates the ball when they had an open shot. But Monday, Anderson didn’t shy away from driving to the hoop.
“Coach said I was giving the ball up when I had open looks,” Anderson said. “She told me to take more shots, so that’s what I did.”
By doing that, she drew fouls from her defenders. Anderson went to the line five time and made all but one of her free throws.
But she had her fair share of misses. She said when she does miss, she feels bad, even though her teammates are never mad.
“I tell the person that passed me the ball I’m sorry for missing,” Anderson said. “Because I messed up their assist.”
Anderson wasn’t the only one taking the ball to the basket. Prince’s play impressed Hickman coach Tonya Mirts.
“Chasity Prince did a good job attacking the basket tonight,” Hickman coach Tonya Mirts said.
A soft-spoken Prince blushed at hearing the comment.
“I’ve been working on it in practice,” she said.
Prince scored nine points, senior Lauren Nolke had 10, and senior Ciara Tatum added seven.
“They gave us a run for our money,” Prince said. “We didn’t know what to expect because we hadn’t played them this season. We hadn’t heard anything about them.”
The Kewpies play Glendale at 5:30 p.m. Friday at Hickman.
ROCK BRIDGE GIRLS BASKETBALL: The Bruins won their first-round game Monday at the California tournament, beating Kansas City-Center 64-29. Kelsey Eckenrode led Rock Bridge (11-2) with 21 points, including a 5-for-5 performance from the three-point line. Katherine Harry scored 12. The Bruins play next at 9 p.m. Wednesday against either Mexico or Moberly.
ROCK BRIDGE BOYS BASKETBALL: The Bruins ran by Kansas City Southeast 76-43 Monday in the first round of the Smith-Cotton tournament.
“We got into a pretty good gear about the end of the third, start of the fourth quarter, and transition and defense got us a lot of easy baskets,” Rock Bridge coach Jim Scanlon said.
Logan Gray led the Bruins (11-1) with 17 points. Erik Darkow had 15, Isaiah Warren had 14 and Aron White had 11.
Rock Bridge plays in the semifinals at 7:15 p.m. Friday against Kansas City-Center.