Lady Wolves’ defensive play is decisive factor against Lakeside

Lake Hamilton's Hayleigh Wyrick (23) races down court Tuesday night for a layup against host Lakeside. The Lady Wolves won, 58-29.


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – Lakeside’s Lady Rams shut down Lake Hamilton senior Aspen Thornton, who wasn’t a decisive offensive factor in Tuesday night’s conference game.

Thornton scored a season-low three points, but the Ouachita Baptist University recruit and her teammates swarmed their rivals on defense for a 58-29 victory at the Lakeside athletic arena.

“We’ve been working a lot on our foot work on defense,” said winning coach Blake Condley. “It’s a matter of getting our girls in the right position, and we did that tonight.

Lake Hamilton senior Aspen Thornton (12) finds her path blocked by Lakeside defender Mady Davenport (4).

Lady Wolves’ emotional play a factor

“Winning on the road against a crosstown rival is always good. There’s a lot of emotion that’s not there in some other games. We had some adversity at times during the game, but I was proud of how we responded to it.”

Lakeside (8-5, 1-1) struggled to get off open shots the first half, falling behind 16-4 after eight minutes. Then Ginny Higginbotham buried three treys in the second quarter to give the Lady Wolves a 27-10 lead at intermission.

“Lake Hamilton is a really good basketball team,” said Lakeside coach Chris Brock. “They’re really high level and well coached. I thought our kids kept fighting really hard. We ran a couple of different sets in the second half, and was better offensively. I was really happy with our defensive effort. We wanted to compete, and I think we did that.”

Lake Hamilton’s Annabelle Coppedge (10) looks for an opening against the Lady Rams.

Lakeside’s 12-0 run wasn’t enough

The Wolves led 29-10 with six minutes left in the third quarter. Three minutes later the margin was only 29-22. Ronni Formby and Allie Pollock accounted for most of Lakeside’s offense during that stretch. Fomby led the Rams with 9 points, all on 3-pointers. Pollock added 8 points.

Audri Winfrey was Lake Hamilton’s big weapon with Thornton held down. Winfrey scored a game-high 17 points, including 6 of 7 from the charity stripe. The Wolves were 13 of 17 on free throws as a team. Higginbotham finished with 10 points, while Tia Mullenix contributed 9 points.


Lake Hamilton’s Friday night games with Pine Bluff are cancelled with the Zebras’ teams quarantined. The Wolves play Hot Springs next Tuesday.

“We’re trying to find a game where both the boys and girls can play the same school,” said Condley.