The Port Arthur News
With the second half of district play kicking off for the District 20-4A boys, we've got a solid sample size of games both in district play and overall to start seeing scoring trends and how well different teams are doing both offensively and defensively.
Not surprisingly, Beaumont Central shows why they are the undefeated district leaders and one of the state's top ranked teams in Class 4A. The Jaguars have the highest per game scoring average (60.6 ppg) and the best scoring defense (46.3 ppg) in 20-4A.
Ozen's offense is next up at 59.2 ppg while Nederland is third in scoring at 56.8 ppg. Defensively, Nederland shoots up to second in the district at 48.7 ppg allowed, and ISthe only other team in 20-4A to allow less than 50 points per game.
PN-G brings up the rear offensively, just falling below Vidor with 45.4 ppg. Livingston is last in points allowed with 56.3 per game for the season.
But, with over 20 games played so far, how a team played at the beginning of the year could influence the results and may not give us a good picture of how a team is playing now. If we look at the last 10 games of each team's schedule, Central still comes out on top in the district, with 66.5 ppg and 42.5 ppg allowed. The big winner in recent trends is PN-G, who raises it scoring average to fourth-best in the district at 49.5 ppg and has the third-best defense in the league at 49.2 ppg allowed.
Over the last 10, the top four teams in both offense and defense are Central, Ozen, Nederland and PN-G, a group likely to be the four playoff teams from 20-4A. If you're looking for a spoiler down the stretch, it might be Little Cypress-Mauriceville. The Bears have a higher scoring average at 47 ppg than both Livingston and Lumberton, two teams ahead of them in the standings, while posting the fifth-best scoring defense in 20-4A.
Next week, we'll take a similar look at the District 21-5A boys.
Game of the week
Beaumont Central at Beaumont Ozen — Tuesday’s contest in Lumberton between the Raiders and the PN-G boys may have more playoff implications. Friday’s game that sees the Channelview girls visiting Port Arthur Memorial may be a clash between two first-place teams. Even Nederland’s Friday trip to Livingston, its longest road trip of the district season, is important for a Bulldog team needing a confidence boost.
But, none of those compare to the clash between the Beaumont schools this week. Central beat Ozen at home in the first half of district play and finished undefeated at the midway point in the district schedule. Ozen sits a game out of first with only one loss and could be looking for a share of the district title with a win. Oh, and Nederland has a vested interest, too, because a win by Ozen and two wins over the Beaumont schools by Nederland in the second half could lead to a three-way tie for the district crown.
Ford glittering for Lady Titans
Last Tuesday, I had a revelation watching a great young talent on the Port Arthur Memorial girls basketball team. Freshman Jakira Ford is the real deal.
Though she had to wait to get a shot on the varsity at the midpoint in the system, Ford showed considerable potential against West Brook. The 6-foot-1 frosh is long enough to grab rebounds and give the Lady Titans a third big off the bench to throw at teams.
As she showed with a fluid steal and then leading a fast break, Ford also has enough athletic ability to play on the outside as well, making her a real headache to match up with for opposing teams. Ford scored 15 poins and had 11 rebounds against the Lady Bruins, doing it with ease.
She’s also just the tip of the iceberg as far as Memorial’s talented freshman class goes, which bodes very well for the future of the program.
Dome Dummies help Nederland
Most student sections at college games are pretty wacky, especially those Cameron Crazies at Duke. In that spirit, Nederland’s student section has decided to take a clever name and come out with a theme for every home game this season.
Thus, the Dome Dummies were born. The group, including Bulldog cornerback Zach Taylor, dressed in togas for last Friday’s loss to Beaumont Central. The previous week, the Dummies dressed in pastel fishing shirts for the Ozen game.
The group even has its own Twitter account at @dome_dummy and is planning on wearing its very own Dome Dummy shirts for Tuesday’s game against Vidor. The Bulldogs can use the good karma, since six of their eight losses on the season have come at home.
Local players in college
The number of local athletes playing college basketball is smaller than those competing in football, but that doesn’t mean Southeast Texas is barren when it comes to college hoops. Here’s what a few local college players have done recently.
Port Arthur Memorial ex Paulletta Powell has played in ten games for Stephen F. Austin this season. The true freshman scored her first two collegiate points in an 80-28 victory over Northwood University. Powell’s best game came against Rice, when she scored two points and added two steals, one rebound and a block.
Another Memorial ex, Shaquille White-Miller, is averaging 21.3 minutes per game for the University of Texas-Arlington. White-Miller has scored 4.4 points per game in 14 appearances and six starts this year while making 40 percent of his 3-point attempts and totaling 43 assists and seven steals this season.
Lastly, former PN-G star Brennan Doty has been making noise for Lamar this year. Doty, who transferred from Oregon last season, has played in five games this season, averaging 8.8 minutes per game, 2.4 points per game and shooting 40 percent from the field. Doty’s best game came against LIU Brooklyn, when he scored seven points, grabbed a team-high eight rebounds wiht two assists and two steals in 21 minutes.
If you know of any other area players competing in college hoops, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.