The Wallace Miners were large and in-charge Thursday night when both the girls and boys basketball teams defeated the visiting Kootenai Warriors 50-43 and 70-43, respectively.
Arguable the more competitive of the two games, the Lady Miners were a little slow out of the gate with their face-off with Kootenai.
“I think the first half was a bit lackadaisical,” Wallace girls coach Chris Lund said, “but the second half was much better.”
After being tied at 21 coming into the second half, senior Maryssa Hogamier powered the Wallace offense by putting up 16 total points and converting on all six of her free throw shots.
Coach Lund stressed after the game that “when she (Maryssa) hits her shots, its great for the whole team.”
Backing up Hogamier’s offense charge was sophomore Hayley Oertli who scored nine points and had a “big night,” Lund said.
With the points piling up, Wallace’s defense also went to work and held the Lady Warriors to only seven points in the third quarter.
Overall, Lund was proud of his team’s play, but noted that their biggest challenge at the tail end of the season is combating what he called the “end-season lull.”
The second game of the night was not nearly as close.
From the opening tip-off, the Wallace boys dominated the court, stealing away the majority of the scoring chances and not giving Kootenai much room to breathe.
Putting up 18 points in the first quarter and 20 in the second, Wallace’s offense was firing on all cylinders.
Although the Miner attack was spearheaded by junior Hunter Gust, who scored 17 points, Wallace boys coach Corey Miller spread the wealth around and pointed out that everyone on team scored.
An even stronger 24-point third quarter was all Wallace needed to wrap this game up for the home team.
Kootenai outscored Wallace 9-8 in the last quarter, but it was not nearly enough to dig themselves out of a nearly 30-point deficit.
“I thought we played real well,” Miller said, “and we shared the ball well.”
The Lady Miners (7-10) will play the Warriors again tonight on the road.
The boys’ (9-7) next game will be Feb. 9 in Clark Fork at 6 p.m.