MH sweeps Searcy, Leonard becomes all-time winningest coach


Tanner Connelley, Sports Reporter

Story courtesy of KTLO

Tuesday was a successful Senior Night for the Mountain Home High School basketball teams, as they swept Searcy for their final home games of the year. Matt Sharp has the details.

Dell Leonard became the all-time winningest coach in Mountain Home history, and the Lady Bombers moved into a three-way tie for first place in the 5A-East after beating up on the Lady Lions 54-23. It was Leonard’s 356th victory at the helm of the varsity program, passing hall of fame coach Janet Wood’s 355 wins. The game was kept close early on, as both teams struggled offensively in the first quarter. Mountain Home started pulling away in the second period. The Lady Bombers were able to distance themselves further from Searcy in the second half, as they went on to win by 31.
Emma Martin and Anna Grace Foreman led Mountain Home with 17 points each in the final home game of their high school basketball careers. No one was in double figures for the Lady Lions.
The Lady Bombers improve to 21-5 on the season and 10-3 in the league. Searcy falls to 6-19 and 1-12.

The boys’ game was decided on a free throw, as Mountain Home edged out the Lions 43-42. It was a back-and-forth game with 16 lead changes and eight ties. The Bombers had the ball in the last few seconds of the game with the score tied at 42, and at that point, Searcy had only committed two team fouls in the second half. The Lions deliberately fouled Mountain Home for the remaining four fouls they had to give. After the sixth foul, the ball was inbounded to Wyatt Gilbert, and Searcy got over-aggressive and committed its seventh foul with five seconds left. Gilbert hit the front end of a one-and-one to put the Bombers back on top. After Gilbert missed the second shot, Freddy Hicks grabbed the rebound, went to the other end of the court and tried one last shot to beat the buzzer. Hicks’ shot was off the mark, and Mountain Home escaped with a one-point victory.
The Bombers were led by Gilbert and Mat Jones with 14 points each. For the Lions, Griffin Love scored 17 points, and Hicks added 12.
Mountain is now 15-11 overall and 6-7 in conference action. Searcy drops to 10-15 and 5-8.

Mountain Home will wrap up the regular season on Friday traveling to West Memphis.

In other 5A-East boys’ action, Jonesboro routed Nettleton 65-34, Marion pounded Paragould 68-33, and West Memphis defeated Greene County Tech 71-64. On the girls’ side, Jonesboro topped Nettleton 59-44, Marion beat Paragould 75-69, and Tech upset West Memphis 70-56.