Liberty-Eylau battled back from two 10-0 runs by Paris, eventuall falling to the Wildcats in a key District 14-4A boys game at the Rader Dome, 75-71.
The Leopards had an opportunity to tie the score in the final seconds, but a 3-pointer was off target. L-E (11-12, 4-5) must now win at North Lamar next Tuesday to qualify for the playoffs, or get help from Paris, which will be playing Pittsburg.
Texas High girls secure top seed in 16-5A
In other action Texas High’s girls earned 16-5A’s top seed defeating Sulphur Springs at Paris, 64-61. Antonia Porter poured in 26 points for the Lady Tigers. Hot Springs whipped Arkansas High’s girls, 70-30. Tierra Holliman led the Lady Backs with 12 points. AHS is now 7-16 on the year and 4-9 in conference.
Pleasant Grove’s boys claimed at least a share of the district championship by edging North Lamar, 46-43. Kameron Woods scored 11 points, and Aaron Harmon added 10 to lead the Hawks (21-5, 7-2). Texas High’s boys secured a playoff berth routing Hallsville, 82-44. C.J. Kelley led the Tigers with 16 points. Hot Springs pulled away in the fourth quarter to beat the Razorbacks, 59-44. Fabion Phillips had 15 points for AHS (11-9, 5-8).
Liberty-Eylau coach Stasik Vaughn was visibly disappointed with the Leopards’ loss to Paris.
“We just didn’t play any defense,” Vaughn said. “We knew exactly what they were going to run, we just failed to execute on defense. Paris did what it needed to do to win. This puts out backs against the wall. If we win at North Lamar we’re in the playoffs.”
The Leopards missed their first seven shots of the game, falling behind 6-0. It was 14-6 at the end of the first quarter. L-E battled back to make it 26-23 at intermission.
Dominique Williams drained a long trey to tie the game at 26 in the third quarter, and Decorian Phillips swished a short shot to put L-E on top momentarily. Paris then raced out to another big lead (54-43). Phillips poured in 15 of his 27 points in the final eight minutes, his third trey tying the score at 66.
Paris scored the next three points, and made its free throws in the final seconds to secure the win.