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Lady Airedales face tough league 1/10/22

Lady Airedales face tough league 

By Kevin Taylor

Alma Schools 


For Alma girls basketball coach Codey Mann, the road to the playoffs begins with winning seven games. 


“I told them (players), ‘We need to win games to get into the state tournament.’ There are some games we feel good about, and there are some teams we’re going to have to beat,” Mann said. 


The Lady Airedales (7-6, 0-1) dropped their 5A-West opener to Vilonia Friday, 58-36. 


Alma will host Siloam Springs (10-3, 1-0) Tuesday. The Lady Panthers opened league play with a narrow 40-36 win over Mountain Home. 


“Siloam's got a really good junior group," Mann said. "They're the kind of team that, no matter how good they are, we've still got a chance to play with them. They kind of run a 3-2 (matchup), and that allows you to stay in the game. Last year they blew us out by 35, and we came here and we've got a chance to beat them."


Alma won seven non-conference games, and Mann believes they could have won a couple of more.


“We lost to (Frontenac) Kansas, Paragould, and Kingston,” he said. “Now, instead of 7-5, you’re sitting there at 10-2 with a play here or there.”


Presli Taylor led Alma with 14 points in last week’s loss to Vilonia. 


Mann expects Greenwood, Vilonia, and Greenbrier to battle for the top spot. 


"Greenwood's really good again," Mann said. "But Vilonia beat Greenwood by seven (45-38) earlier this year. They played a 1-3-1 zone and really packed it in and covered the corners (3-point shooters)."


Mann expects Greenbrier to have its best team ever.


"This is Greenbrier's year," he said. "All those girls are seniors, except the post player, and you know they're thinking they've got a great chance to win it."


Greenbrier won 15 games (15-12) in 2020-21. They're already 9-3 this season. 



Vilonia (10-2) and Greenwood (10-4) have already won 10 games. 


"Every play, every possession matters," Mann said. "We have to figure out how to win seven games."




Vilonia 62, Alma 30 


BOYS — Alma hung around for a half Friday against Vilonia. 


But the Eagles weren’t in a giving mood in the second half. 


Vilonia outscored the Airedales 17-2 at the start of the second half and coasted to a 62-30 5A-West victory. Hunter McAlister led the Airedales with 12 points. 


Logan Taylor added eight points. 


Alma shot just 26 percent from the floor and committed 11 of his 17 turnovers in the second half. Vilonia outrebounded the Airedales, 32-23. 


Sophomore Dashun Spence led Vilonia (7-7, 1-0) with 15 points. 


The Airedales (3-8, 0-1) host Siloam Springs Tuesday. 


Farmington 46, Alma 7th Green 25 


BOYS — The Alma Airedales’ seventh grade Green team dropped its first game of the season, 46-25, to Siloam Springs. The Airedales trailed 23-10 at the half before closing to within 28-23 in the second half. 


Alma travels to Ramsey Wednesday. 


Cade Moore led the Airedales with 13 points. Hudson Loughridge and Luke Stogsdill scored three points each. Brycen Lester had two points, and Daniel Rodriguez and Sammy Moore each had one. 


Alma 7th Gold 34, Farmington 29 


BOYS — Izaac Plourde scored 12 points to power the Airedales’ Gold squad to a 34-29 win over Farmington. 


Colton Nutt and Andrew Bush finished with eight and six points, respectively. Brian Snider and Jaylin Trice had three each, and Jalen Spears finished with two.


Alma travels to Ramsey Wednesday.