After several months of preparation to make their debut and return to the hardwood for the 2016-17 basketball season, the hometown Hope Ladycats hosted the Hot Springs Lady Trojans Tuesday night for the season-home opener at Jones Fieldhouse Gymnasium.

After several months of preparation to make their debut and return to the hardwood for the 2016-17 basketball season, the hometown Hope Ladycats hosted the Hot Springs Lady Trojans Tuesday night for the season-home opener at Jones Fieldhouse Gymnasium.

The Ladycats started out strong in first quarter action with sophomore Raley Potter knocking two key free-throws from the charity stripe to give Hope the early advantage at the 7:48 mark. The Lady Trojans tied it at 2-2 at the 7:15 mark, but Potter drained a trifecta from behind the arc to put Hope back ahead 5-2 at the 7:18 mark.

The Lady Trojans then regain control to take a 13-9 lead at the 1:31 mark, then scored the final basket in the first quarter under a minute. Potter and senior Tazharia Woodberry added two key baskets for Hope in the first, but Hot Springs led the Ladycats 15-9 ending first period action.

In the second quarter, the Ladycats were held to seven points scored as the Lady Trojans poured 22 points in the basket. At halftime, the Ladycats had a 37-16 deficit to Hot Springs.

In the third quarter, the Ladycats added eight points with Hot Springs posting double-digits of 11 points to push their lead to 48-24 heading into the final period of play.

In the fourth, Hot Springs dropped eight points into the basket with six points coming from Woodberry and Stephenique Morris both swishing two three-pointers apiece to finish out scoring for Hope. Hot Springs went onto a 26 point win over the Ladycats 56-30 as the Lady Trojans begin hoops season 1-0 and Hope 0-1.

For the game, Ladycats' Potter and Woodberry led scoring with eight points apiece, Andria Curtis followed with five points, Zahria Woods added four points and Morris finished with three points.

For Hot Springs, Ariana Guinn led all scorers with a big 23 points, Keyneso Hunter dropped 18 points and Imani Honey posted 10 points for a trio of double-figure scoring.

The Ladycats will regroup and have time to rebound from their tough defeat and return to action following the Thanksgiving holiday to battle New Boston at home Dec. 2 at Jones Fieldhouse Gymnasium.