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Basketball report: Memorial tops Nederland, PNG falls to Crosby in district openers

The Memorial girls basketball team orchestrated a 22-point fourth quarter to come from behind and beat Nederland 53-52 on Tuesday.

The game was the District 21-5A opener for both Memorial (4-5, 1-0) and Nederland (3-4, 0-1).

“We showed a lot of resilience,” Memorial head coach Kevin Henry said. “We didn’t give up even though it was looking gloom for us. I told the girls we just needed to keep getting stops one at a time and we just needed to capitalize. We missed some layups early, but we started hitting shots in the fourth quarter.”

Henry said his team found some extra energy. Memorial outscored Nederland 22-12 in the fourth period.

The Titans were led by senior point guard Jordan Duncan and senior shooting guard Erial Fontenot, who had 20 and 11 points, respectively.

“They provide a threat on the perimeter for us,” Henry said of guards. “They love to shoot. It might not go in but it won’t stop them from shooting. They are also a threat on the defensive end. They are able to get in some guards’ faces and cause some problems. They have pretty active hands.”

Henry said it was important for his team to open district play with a win.

“The season is broken down like games,” he said. “The preseason is the first quarter. The first half of district is the second quarter and the third and fourth quarters are the second half of district and the playoffs.”

Memorial will play Beaumont United at home at 7 tonight.

PNG (7-2, 0-1) entered the Crosby game with a key injury, head coach Lance Robertson said, and fell 59-36 to the Cougars.

“Shelby Letulle rolled her ankle and wasn’t able to play,” he said. “We lost some senior leadership right there. We were still in the game. Even with the big loss, making baskets and protecting the ball was our biggest thing. We didn’t get back on defense at all.”

While PNG’s next district game will be at home against Nederland on Tuesday, the Indians will travel to Winnie to take on East Chambers at 11:30 a.m. Saturday. PNG defeated East Chambers 45-41 in their last matchup Dec. 5.

“We will probably still be without Shelby until the Nederland game,” Robertson said. “We played East Chambers before when we had to pick up a game. We are treating it just like district. We want to be better the second time we play them even though we won the first time. We want to keep improving.”

Nederland’s next game is at Crosby Saturday at noon.