GROVE - The first time Miami lost a game this season, the Wardogs went on a xx-game winning streak.
Coach Rusty Mercer wouldn't mind at all if that happened again.
His Wardogs look to bounce back from a 69-59 overtime loss at Coffeyville, Kan., tonight when they tackle arch-rival Grove here tonight in a Verdigris Valley Conference game.
"This is a great rivalry game," Mercer said. "Their crowd will be really loud."
The contest will be the third straight on the road for MHS dating back to their belated home opener on Dec. xx against Coffeyville, Kan.
"We've fared well on the road," Mercer said. "We don't have that safety net and we need to be better in a lot of areas."
The Wardogs celebrate homecoming in a very literal sense Friday night when they entertain Jay in conference play.
The boys' game will be played first starting at 6:30 p.m. Coronation ceremonies will be between games, with the girls' game following.
Coffeyville took advantage of the home court to break out to a 17-12 lead in the first eight minutes then rolled into the half with a 33-27 advantage.
The Dogs finally took a 42-39 lead with 1:28 left in the third quarter on a 3-point goal by Michael Anderson. That capped a 7-0 run that erased a 39-35 deficit.
Miami eventually led by six (47-41) but the hosts went on a 9-2 run that left the game tied at 50.
The lead changed hands three times before a free throw by Elijah Hershey with 31.8 seconds remaining created a 56-56 tie.
Then in overtime, the Golden Tornado outscored MHS 13-3 in the extra period - when the Wardogs were 0-for-7 from the field.
"The bottom line is have to rebound better and make better decisions," Mercer said.
Grove is in its first season under Garrett Mantle, who had previously been men's basketball coach at Cameron University in Lawton.
"They are quite different from last year," Mercer said. "They were so power-oriented and big. The funny thing is, last year we had trouble matching up with their size and this year there are some concerning matchups with some of their guys on the perimeter.
"They are more of a spread-it-out-and-penetrate, shoot-the-3-type team."
Miami's girls hope to snap a six-game losing streak against a Grove team that is coming off a 59-52 victory over Jay.
The Lady Wardogs dropped a 53-31 decision to Coffeyville on Friday, a game that saw them score 13 points in the first quarter but manage only 10 the next two frames.