And with tall and lean failing to take advantage of its attributes, short and quick did the trick.
A feisty Snook ruined Thorndale’s attempt to repeat as Lady Tiger Classic champions with a defensive-minded 34-26 victory Saturday afternoon at Tiger Gymnasium, while also handing the Lady Dogs their first taste of defeat in 2011.
Snook, ranked 13th in Class A, improved to 5-1 on the season and placed Shakera Barnes, Miya Hoskins and Chastity Howard on the all-tournament team.
Olivia Atkins and Marlena Hall were chosen from No. 15 Thorndale, which had its eight-game winning streak stopped.
“We played very well in the first two games of the tournament,” said Thorndale Coach Bradley Dickerson. “Had a tough one against a good Waco Robinson team. Played well defensively against Snook. They were extremely quick and good ball handlers.
“I thought we had several girls do a great job defensively on their two good guards. Offensively we couldn’t do much right. We wasted numerous opportunities to score easy baskets...and when you’re not playing great you can’t waste any opportunity to score. We could just never get anything going.
“We normally average about 30 points per game inside...we had 10 Saturday. Tamicka Cook was not there either and I think she would have done well in that game.”
Cook was attending a funeral in Pennsylvania.
T he L ady Dog s st r ug g le d mightily from the floor and could not take advantage of their inside tandem of the 6-foot-5 Atkins and the 6-foot-2 Hoffman.
Thorndale converted just nineof 33 shots (27 percent), many at point blank range. Four of its field goals came in the fourth quarter when the Lady Dogs made a final run at Snook.
The Lady Blue Jays got off just 23 shots, but made 11, including three threes.
Thorndale fell behind 7- 0 at the outset and managed just 16 points through the first three quarters and trailed 21-10 at halftime and 28-16 heading into the final period.
The Lady Dogs reeled off eight straight points to open the fourth quarter, including a three-pointer and a drive to the basket from Hall and another drive from Hoffman to slice the double-digit lead to 30-24 with 1 minute, 44 seconds remaining to be played.
After a pair of free throws from Barnes to make it 32-24, Hoffman hit another basket with 40 seconds left, but could get no closer.
Snook, which went almost six minutes without a basket, survived on four free throws in the final quarter, taking and converting just one shot from the floor, a layup from Jessica Hadley.
Hall led Thorndale with 13 points, while Atkins and Hoffman had two apiece.
Barnes paced Snook with 16, her average for the season.
The Lady Dogs cruised in their first round match with an 80-39 win over Class 2A Hearne.
Atkins turned in a doubledouble with 21 points and 12 rebounds.
Hoffman poured in 17, while Hall had 12 points and seven assists.
Thorndale trimmed Class 3A Robinson 38-34 in the second round with Atkins scoring 12 with six rebounds and four blocks.
Hall chipped in 10.
The Lady Dogs increased their record to 9-1 with a 69-52 win over Class 3A Smithville Tuesday.
Thorndale broke open a tie game with strong showings in the second and third quarters, outscoring the Lady Tigers 38-18 in that span.
The Lady Dogs relied heavily on their inside game with Hoffman canning 25 points and Atkins 17.
Hoffman snared eight rebounds and Atkins six.
Heather Butterworth passed off eight assists and Hall six.
2011 LADY TIGER CLASSIC
Snook 34, Thorndale 26
Robinson 48,Rockdale 30
Cameron def. Hearne
Taylor def. Aus. Lanier
Snook 42, Rockdale 30
Thorndale 38,Robin. 34
Cameron 40, Taylor 31
Hearne 44, Lanier 32
Rockdale 58, Taylor 18
Thorndale 80, Hearne 39
Snook 42, Cameron 35
Robinson 65, Lanier 28
Kandice Gowdy Barnes—