Alpha Omega Lady Lions got their 2019-20 season off to a hot start Tuesday night at home, crushing the KOR Education School Knights 46-23.
The Lady Lions never yielded the lead after starting out the game on a 7-0 run. They had a rough second quarter, giving up 13 points, but held onto a 17-14 halftime lead. Alpha Omega came out of the break strong, outscoring the Knights 29-9.
AOA was led by juniors Jaiden Byrd and Shaylee Ritter with 14 and 12 points, respectively.
“I feel pretty good,” said head coach Chris McCarty. “These girls are working really hard. It’s great to win [by] getting out and jumping on somebody.”
After claiming the TAPPS 2A Division 6 title last year, the Lady Lions are hungry to repeat.
“I think we are gonna be even better than last year,” said Ritter. “I think the game we played right there is already better than half our season last year. I think we’re gonna be really good this year.”
With a tough schedule ahead for the Lady Lions, McCarty is enjoying the team he is coaching this year.
“It’s a challenge, and we’re ready for that challenge,” said McCarty. “This year we put some things in place and the girls are ready to get district again.”
The Lady Lions are playing with a chip on their shoulder after last season, when they went 8-0 in district play, but were eliminated by Allen Academy by one point in the first round.
AOA boys cruise to blowout win in opener
The Alpha Omega Academy Lions defeated the KOR Education School 76-24 with the help of senior forward Karson Kester’s 26-point night.
The Lions started the game with 13-0 run and never looked back, taking a 42-7 lead into halftime.
“Our guys came out eager and ready to play because it’s our first game,” said head coach Wes Jones. “It wasn’t a big test for us, so we still have some work to do as far as getting ready for people we are going to play down the stretch.”
With it being his last season opener, Kester was trying to make it a special night.
“Little things like reaching on defense,” said Kester on how the team can improve. “We just gotta learn to keep our hands out and play more physical. Even if we’re doing overly well we still gotta keep the fundamentals and not make bad habits.”
The Lions also saw a powerful performance from freshman forward Kaden Judie, who scored 16 points in his high school debut. Judie showed his ability to score away from the basket, but also delivered a couple of dunks for the Lions.
“I feel pretty proud of myself,” said Judie. “I was out there scoring points tonight helping my team win.”
“He’s a phenomenal talent,” said Jones “He’s 14 years old, a freshman and really runs the floor well. He has a lot of bounce to him and is just a real talented kid.”
The Alpha Omega Lions and Lady Lions will return to action at home on Friday against Providence.