Poise is a byproduct of work and experience.

The game can slow down when a player has confidence in herself and knows what the other team attempts to do.

Freshman guard Amiya Howard played with poise Friday. For instance, she knocked down the go-ahead 3-pointer and three second-half assists — all the while Dickson played three second-half defenses.

Foul trouble hampered Dickson in its 47-39 loss to Plainview.

“I guess it just develops the more you play, the harder you play,” Howard said of poise. “It just comes as you develop as a player.”

Howard's first assist occurred roughly halfway through the third quarter, a possession or two after her go-ahead triple. Howard found Anna Simmons for a basket. Howard found Peyton Jones with 6:10 remaining in the final quarter, stretching Plainview's lead to 40-32. With 2:19 to play, Howard found Parham, who finished with a game-high 19 points. Plainview's (3-3) senior guard has a “very good basketball IQ,” Howard said. “That's one thing that I try to learn and take from her, is to be smarter on the court.”

Parham praised Howard's play.

“I think Howard did really good,” Parham said. “She was really poised and composed out there. I'm proud. She's really developing as a player and it's good to have her on my team.”

In the first half, Dickson (4-4) ran mostly a 1-2-2 zone, compact under the three-point line. Parham shot 2 of 6 from three-point distance in the first half.

The Lady Comets' box-and-1 focused on Parham.

“My role changed a little bit from shooting to passing the ball around, really getting my team involved,” Parham said. “That's what I like to do, is get everyone involved.”

Simmons scored all eight of her points after halftime.

“Her effort's always there,” Plainview coach Mike Dooney said. “She stretches the floor so well for us because she's always going 100 percent. She's an awesome kid to coach.”

Dooney praised Howard's play.

Plainview won because it made more plays. Ava Blackmon blocked a fourth-quarter shot — which led to a basket by Simmons as Plainview stretched its lead to 38-32. Leah Selensky had a steal. Parham found Jones behind Dickson's zone for a basket to make it 44-36.

The initial two quarters featured six lead changes and five ties. But Kirstyn Jolly and Clary Donica battled foul trouble throughout the game. The Lady Comets' senior guard picked up her second with 5:34 to play in the opening quarter. At the 3:38 mark, a referee whistled Donica for her second as Dickson's junior forward pursued an offensive rebound.

The duo started the second quarter, which Jolly opened with a hoop. Donica added a pair of baskets.

(Plainview's Parham and Howard hit one 3-pointer apiece to keep it close.)

With 2:30 to play, Donica committed her third. Jolly committed her third 66 seconds later.

Neither player started the second half.

With 5:15 remaining, Dickson trailed 40-32. Donica — who finished with 14 points and nine rebounds — committed her fourth pursuing a rebound from Jolly's missed layup.

“I think the team just had great effort all around,” Howard said. “The first half was difficult but at the end, we picked it up.”

Said Parham, “It was a really great team win. We executed on the defensive end and got the job done, so it's good to go into Christmas break with a win.”

Box score

Dickson     10  14   8    7 Plainview   10  11   14  9

Plainview: Ally Parham 19, Amiya Howard 8, Anna Simmons 8, Rachel Jacobi 6, Peyton Jones 5.

Dickson: Clary Donica 14, Hailey Davis 10, Kirstyn Jolly 6, Aly Goss 5, Sienna Young 2, Kristina Harwell 2.


Plainview: 4 (Parham 2, Howard 2)

Dickson: 1 (Goss)

Free throws

Plainview: 12-10

Dickson: 8-17