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Amber McIntosh goes for the ball. 

HOUSTON -- The Houston girls basketball team took a close game into halftime, but East Webster pulled away in the third quarter to rout the Hilltoppers 53-28 in Houston on Tuesday.

With the game tied 6-6 in the first, the Wolverines converted on some Houston turnovers and a pair of Lauren Graves blocks to take a 12-8 lead at the end of the first quarter.

Amber McIntosh kept Houston in it early, recording a block and a big rebound to keep the game tied at 13 apiece. East Webster then closed out the first half on a 10-3 run to take a 23-17 lead at the break.

“First half I think we did well” Houston coach Justin Childs said. “I think we missed a few opportunities and gave them a lot of good looks that we shouldn’t, but in the second half, credit East Webster, they really pressured us, caused a lot of turnovers and made our shots end in turnovers instead of shots.”

In the second half, the Wolverines scored the first eight points to take a 31-17 lead. McIntosh then hit a layup to stop the bleeding and cut the lead to 31-19, but the Wolverines never looked back, erupting to a 41-21 lead at the end of the third quarter. The Hilltoppers fought back in the fourth quarter but it was too little, too late and the Wolverines closed out the win.

"We didn’t handle (the pressure) very well, “ Childs said. “I know what we are really going to focus on in practice. Handling the ball, getting some pressure and really some decision making. But this is a group that works hard, they want to work on it, we’re going to work on it. We just didn’t make very good decisions with the ball.

Lexi Heair led the team with 8 points. Also scoring points were Anna Claire Smith with 7, India Pittman with 3, Tot Clark had 4, Trinity Buggs and McIntosh each scored 2 and Riah Brinker and Kalaysia Johnson each scored 1.

“Lexi Heair came out on fire and did a lot of things well that kept us in it, kept us competing,” Childs said.

The Hilltoppers fall to 5-2.

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