LONGVIEW, Texas – Liberty-Eylau girls lost their focus in the third quarter Monday at Spring Hill High School, but it was understandable.
The Lady Leopards came out smoking hot, using their speed and intense pressure to build a 36-14 lead in the first half. It was the same starters for both teams in the third quarter, and Mabank dominated. L-E (22-11) regrouped and won its first bi-district title since 2013, beating the Lady Panthers, 58-47.
Liberty-Eylau lost momentum in third quarter
Mabank (13-18) had stolen the momentum in the second half when junior Skylier Bailey came up big for the Leopards at the start of the fourth quarter. Bailey scored the first seven points of the final quarter, finishing with 10.
“I told the girls during a timeout not to lose their focus just because Mabank was doing something different,” L-E coach Aquanetta Watson said. “We still had a big lead, and we finally started playing our game again. Rebounding hurt us in the third quarter.”
Liberty-Eylau roared out to a 28-8 lead behind senior Taylor Crabtree, who scored 12 of her game-high 24 points in the first quarter. Sophomore. Eliyah Howard enjoyed a good night offensively with 11 points.
The Leopards advance to play the winner of Monday’s game between Carthage and Gilmer.
Texas High joins Liberty-Eylau girls in area round
Texas High’s girls started slow against Highland Park, falling behind 22-13 after eight minutes.
The Lady Tigers (26-5) outscored Highland Park 62-32 in the final three quarters to post a 75-54 victory for the 5A bi-district title. THS advances to play Frisco Liberty or McKinney North.
Kerrighan Dunn, Mia Wilson and Antonia Porter all scored 16 points for the Lady Tigers.
Texas High plays Frisco Liberty Friday at 7 p.m. at Wills Point High School.
Pleasant Grove’s girls ran into a hot-shooting Van team Monday at Spring Hill High School. The Lady Panthers buried 13 treys, defeating the Hawks, 67-40. Van’s top five players were all underclassmen.
Senior Madeline Haak scored 14 for the Lady Hawks, with Sha’Nequa Henry contributing 11.
“My hat’s off to Van; I don’t how good they were before the playoffs, but they were great tonight,” PG coach Jason Boston said. “We thought we had an advantage because they’re so young. I’m just scratching my head trying to figure out what happened.”