LOCUST GROVE — The routine will be changed this weekend when Miami travels to Locust Grove and Seneca, Mo., for high school basketball games.
Locust Grove is celebrating homecoming, so the boys’ contest will be played first tonight with the girls following.
Then on Saturday at Seneca, the girls’ game will tip a 90 minutes earlier than usual, starting at 5 p.m.
There had been some confusion since Seneca girls’ coach Bob Coffey said his schedule has the game tipping at 5 p.m. Miami’s had it at 6.
It was cleared up this morning.
He said administrators at Miami and Seneca were to resolve the problem this morning.
Both of Miami’s teams are out to break losing streaks, the girls dropping four straight while the boys have lost six in a row.
Included in the tailspin are close losses to Pryor Tuesday night at the MAC The girls lost 50-41 before the Wardogs fell 50-44.
“Our defensive effort in the half-court had us in trouble from the start,” Lady Wardog coach Brian Busby said. “I thought our full-court defense looked decent. We looked confused sometimes on defense. That’s a very fixable thing.”
“You can’t count on a girl to make 10 out of 10 from the 3-point line. You can’t fix that, but you definitely fix your defense.”
The Lady Wardogs, up 17-16 at the half, fell behind 33-27 heading into the fourth quarter.
“I got on them pretty hard at the half about tying a game together,” Busby said. “I am ready for them to. Even though we’d been on a break, we should have used it more positively and got ready for this run.
“It’s going to be tough. If we’re not prepared, we could be in trouble.”
Locust Grove improved to 4-3 with a 57-49 win over Jay Tuesday night.
“Locust Grove is pretty tough,” Busby said. “They will be a handful for us. I’ve never been there, but the word is that it’s a tough place to play.”
Seneca’s girls improved to 8-4 Thursday night with a 65-52 win over Carl Junction.
The Lady Indians upset Missouri Class 2 No. 7 Purdy 69-67 Tuesday night.
Their losses were to Webb City and three Arkansas schools: Springdale, Bentonville and Class AAAAAAA state champ Fayetteville.
Bentonville also was a state qualifier last year, losing in the quarterfinals.
Coffey, who spent time at Wyandotte and Afton, is in his second season as Seneca girls’ coach.
He has four senior returning starters.
The Locust Grove boys, coached by Ronnie Maple, are ranked 14th in Class 4A with a 9-1 record thanks to an 80-56 win over Jay.
“We’ve won the two times since we’ve played there, but we’ve been fortunate enough to go down and play pretty well,” Miami coach Rusty Mercer said. “It will take quite an effort for us the way Locust has been playing this year.
“They’ve got a lot of experience back (returning all five starters from a 10-14 team). They’ve got a nice blend of size and guards. They can beat you in a variety of ways.”
The Miami-Pryor boys’ game was nip-and-tuck for the first six minutes, with the score tied at 9-9.
A 6-0 run gave the Tigers the lead for good.
The closest Miami would be down the stretch was seven, 46-41, with 1:17 left, but the visitors converted on four of seven free throws to ice the win.
“We’re starting a tough stretch,” Mercer said. “This is an important game. We go away for five straight games against ranked teams (the Pirates and Seneca before playing Tulsa Lincoln Christian, Roland and Welch in the NEO Tournament).
“We will have to really move forward and find ourselves.”
Seneca’s boys are 8-2 after beating Diamond, Mo., 42-31 on Tuesday.
The Indians’ losses are to Pryor in the Vinita tournament and to Carthage, Mo.
They play at Carl Junction tonight.