Northeast Tarrant

Panthers shaping up tough on defense

The Colleyville Heritage boys basketball team improved to 2-0 in district competition on Friday night with a one-point victory over Haltom, and coach Stephen Hamrick said he believes his team is in a good position early on.

Colleyville Heritage played L.D. Bell on Tuesday after the print deadline and will host Southlake Carroll at 8 p.m. on Friday.

“I think it is going to be a great game,” Hamrick said. “They are really playing well as of late. Coach (Eric) McDade does a great job with that team. I think those kids are playing at a high level, and it is going to be good. Their kids play very well on the defensive end.

“They shoot the ball very well from the perimeter, and they've got some guys that can just go and score. I think it is going to be a very competitive game, and I think it is going to be a lot of fun.”

Colleyville Heritage defeated Haltom 36-35 on Friday night, and Hamrick said that his team played especially well in one area of the game.

“I thought we did really good defensively,” Hamrick said. “We held both of their leading scorers below their average and their top rebounders below their average. I thought we were able to make tough shots, and just kind of ground it out and found a way to win.”

The Panthers won their district opener against Euless Trinity by one point as well last Tuesday, defeating the Trojans by a score of 41-40, and Hamrick said it was basically more of the same.

“I think we have been very good on the defensive end and on the backboard,” Hamrick said. “We kind of dictate the tempo on that. We've had close games all year. We've played four overtime games, and I think that in the pre-season kind of prepared us for the district grind.

“We just find a way to put some positive possessions away late in the games to get wins and defeat some quality opponents.”

Hamrick said that he has had a number of different players step up at different times throughout the season and said that in the game against Haltom, he definitely had a stand out effort.

“We've had different guys step up at different times,” Hamrick said. “The other night against Haltom, we had Maxx Crosby come off the bench and was very effective. I believe he had 12 points and 15 rebounds, and that is one of our strengths is our interior guys.

“We've had different players step up on different nights, and he was big against Haltom.”

Hamrick said there are a few areas of concern that he believes his team will need to correct if it wants to have continued success this season.

“We just have to get a little more efficient offensively,” Hamrick said. “Sometimes, there will be lapses there that are not necessarily bad possessions, but where we just didn't shoot it well or put the ball int the hall. We need to get to the foul line more and shoot the ball with confidence to get some positive results.”