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  • Playoff contenders (VIDEO)

    IMG 3597BRIAN BESCH | PCE Chris Washington leans in for the dunk attempt.

    By Brian Besch

    The Lions established an early lead with its defense versus Liberty Tuesday, winning a 61-35 contest over the Panthers.

    A 20-2 lead early in the second quarter was enough to allow Livingston to coast for a while. They did coast, and Liberty closed the advantage to 10 points at 25-15 early on in the third quarter. 

    "The first half, we played OK, but we still didn't play with a lot of energy," Livingston coach Calvin Phillips said. "Then, we came back in the second half and I thought we were going too slow. We talked about putting more man-to-man full court pressure on in the second half so we could get ourselves going. That kind of helped us out."

    The man-to-man defense indeed helped, as Livingston scored 23 points in the period to quell any chance of a Panther comeback. 

    Chris Washington led the way with a dozen points, while Izzy Enard had 11 and Julian Gardner added nine.

    "I will take a win any way that it goes," Phillips said. "We are back tied for fourth now and we've got Hamshire-Fannett. If we can get them, that would be a big win for us right there."

    Livingston fell to Hamshire-Fannett in the first round by seven points. The hope is they can take a week to prepare with an open date Friday and get a win that would propel the team into playoff contention. The Longhorns are currently tied for fourth place with the Lions. 

    Phillips said his first year as head coach at Livingston is not going how he planned.

    "I don't like where I am at, I will be upfront with you on that. When I stepped in the gym at the beginning of the year, I saw the size and athleticism of those guys. I thought we would probably be in the running. We started off 5-0 and dropped off and started playing very erratic. It's kind of been disappointing, but I will still take what we have. I am hoping that we will finish up strong and peak out in the second half and get some more wins."

    The coach said that he wonders if all of his athletes are committed to him or if they are still trying to figure him out the same way he is trying to figure them out.

    "They don't know how to take me. I get on them hard sometimes and in this time and age, some kids don't take that kind of coaching anymore. You have to be more positive and not run them so much in a negative mode. I'm learning them and they are learning me, and if we can get in that fourth spot (playoff seed), that would be a blessing."

    The coach said in order to reach the postseason, his team's shooting would need to improve so the half-court offense can be more productive. The team now relies heavily on its defense to create offense.

    After the road trip to Hamshire-Fannett Tuesday, the Lions will host district leaders Huffman Hargrave next Friday.

  • 2020-21 Hunting Season

    Scott Vaughn and grandsonCOURTESY PHOTO Scott Vaughn and grandson posing with a hog shot in Northern Tyler County October 30, 2020.

    By Caleb Fortenberry

    Covid-19 has had people recreating more this past year than in the last several years and with White-tailed deer muzzleloader season being over, there have been plenty of eager East Texan sportsmen wanting to show off a few bagged game animals.

    For years, newspapers have been publishing sportsmen and their game. Here recently, showcasing has been less than normal. Maybe it’s time to start showing off those game that hunters haven’t been able to brag on for some time.

    Here’s a list of a few of the harvests from East Texas, or people from the area:

    Tyler County

    1. Tina Barnes

    Tina BarnesTina Barnes - 9 point, with crossbow in Chester, TX on October 24, 2020.

    2. Dusty Sturrock

    Dusty SturrockDusty Sturrock - 9 point in Chester, TX on November 15th, 2020

    3. KimSturrock

    Kim SturrockKim Sturrock – 8 point in Chester, TX on November 8th, 2020

    4. Mark Keller

    Mark KellerMark Keller - 9 point 14.5”, spread in Colmesneil, Tx on November 27, 2020

    5. Buck Odom

    Buck Odom 2Buck Odom – Hog shot between Woodville and Chester on December 17, 2020.

    6. Nathan Vaughn

    Nathan VaughnNathan Vaughn - 8 point buck at the Diamond T Ranch in Warren, Texas on January 3, 2021.

    7. Scott Vaughn

    Scott VaughnScott Vaughn - 10 point buck in Northern Tyler County November 8, 2020.

    Polk County 

    8. Ashton Davis

    Ashton DavisAshton Davis - Doe, harvested in Texas hunters club in Soda, TX.

    9. Paul Oliver

    Paul OliverPaul Oliver - 10 Point with a 19 Inch Spread at the Texas Hunter Club in Soda, TX.

    Houston County 

     10. Hunter Burris

    Hunter BurrisHunter Burris, 9 years old from Danbury, TX holding his first deer, 7-point, on January 2, 2021 in Crockett, TX.

  • Beene wins 24-2A crown, Lady Cats qualify

                                   JASON CHLAPEK | PCE Big Sandy senior Bali Mitchell finishes fifth in the District 24-2A cross country meet last week. The Lady Cats finished second as a team and will compete in the Region III-2A Meet on Tuesday in Huntsville.

    By Jason Chlapek

    BROADDUS — Big Sandy junior Seth Beene Williams won the varsity boys race at the District 24-2A cross country meet on Oct. 28 at Jackson Hill Marina in Broaddus.

    Beene finished the race with a time of 17 minutes, 23 seconds in frigid, rainy conditions and beat runner-up Jose Jimenez of Spurger by 26 seconds (17:49). This season also is the first time Beene participated in cross country.

    “Never ran in weather like this,” Beene said. “A lot of people told me I’d be good at it and I tried it out. It’s pretty nice. I’m very competitive and I like anything that I can try to win.”

    The top two teams and top 10 individuals qualified for the Region III-2A Meet on Tuesday, Nov. 10 at Kate Barr Ross Park in Huntsville. Despite Beene’s first-place finish and a fifth-place finish from Jordan Martinez, the Wildcats finished third and will miss out on competing as a team.

    Broaddus won the boys crown with 47 points, while Spurger took second with 48. Big Sandy had 49 points — two shy of first and one shy of second.

    Beene and Martinez will compete in the region meet as individuals. Despite winning the individual title, Beene believes his best is yet to come.

    “I could’ve run better,” he said. “I’m coming off of a cramp injury, but I think I did well overall. I stretched, iced it and and rested as much as I could.”

    Although this is Beene’s first season to run cross country, he has been a member of the Big Sandy basketball program. While basketball is his first love, he is open to participate in college cross country or track and field.

    “Basketball is my first love, but I could see myself running in college,” Beene said.

    While the Wildcats missed out on a region team berth, the Lady Cats did not. They finished second to Tyler County rival Colmesneil.

    Big Sandy had top-10 finishes from Lauryn Hoffman (second), Bali Mitchell (fifth) and Lauren Hulin (eighth). Rounding out the Lady Cats’ score of 43 points was Lillian Fultz (16th) and Corynn Kaleh (22nd).

    Colmesneil won the district crown with 38 points. The Lady Bulldogs are coached by Big Sandy alumnus Trey Bullock.

    “I’m not sure if this is our first team title or not,” Bullock said. “We have very hard-working girls here at Colmesneil and I knew that they had good effort. Every coach would like for their athletes to give their best effort. I feel that’s what the boys and girls at Colmesneil do — give their best effort. A lot of these kids do volleyball or football as well. It’s a challenge dealing with injuries or running the day after a volleyball match or a football game, but through hard work they were still able to practice early in the morning. I think that’s all a coach can ask for is the best effort.”

    In addition to being the head boys and girls cross country coach, Bullock also is the head boys basketball coach and a football assistant at Colmesneil.

  • Big Sandy ends season in regional tournament

    IMG 5256BRIAN BESCH | PCE Elias Bullock shoots from 15 feet out.

    By Brian Besch

    One of the state’s top teams needed every minute Tuesday to defeat Big Sandy, as LaPoynor escaped Central Heights High School with a 53-50 win in the regional semifinals.

    With just 15 seconds to play and a tie score at 50 each, LaPoynor worked the ball into the post, where the bucket was made with a foul. The free throw was good and the Wildcats had one last chance.

    Inbounding at half court with 12 seconds to go, a Flyer steal sealed the contest.

    “I'm really proud of the kids and how we competed tonight,” Big Sandy coach Kevin Foster said. “You know that you're playing the fourth ranked team in the state and the kids came out and played really hard. I think that probably the biggest factor in the game was we defended well, but the thing that hurt us the entire game was turnovers.

    We had some very uncharacteristic turnovers and I give them credit for that.

    “Our decision-making was poor and it is tough to win games like that when you turn the ball over and we still had a chance. I told them in the locker room that the first three playoff games could have gone either way for the most part. We were able to make plays down the stretch and tonight they made plays. That's what those close games come down to.” 

    The Wildcats led after one quarter and were down just a field goal at halftime. They held leads in the fourth quarter, when momentum shifted often.

    A big factor keeping the ‘Cats in the game was excellent free throw shooting. They were 17-for-20 at the charity stripe. Adrian Thompson led Big Sandy with 14 points, Kaden Foster had 10 and Dante Williams had nine in his final high school game.

    Williams, Josiah Celestine and Weston Mayer will move on after finishing their senior year of high school.

    “(They are) just a tremendous group of kids, first of all. Not even talking about basketball,” Foster said of his seniors.

    “They are just a good group of kids that are very dependable. They are going to go on and do good things in life. At the end of the day, I think that is the most important thing. I'm very proud of the seniors and I am going to miss them. They were just a lot of fun to be around.” 

    IMG 5250BRIAN BESCH | PCE Seth Beene-Williams shoots over and around defenders.

    A team that did not have all of its players until the final seven games of the season, the Wildcats peaked at the right time to become one of the better 2A teams in Texas. They were able to defeat the No. 10 team in the state and were a bucket away from the state’s No. 4 team.

    “If you would have told me that this team would be in the regional semifinals and not only make it here, but play the fourth-ranked team in the state and have a chance to win in under a minute, I would have said you were crazy. But these kids keep battling and fighting and they played together. They are just the true definition of a team. If you can do that, you can accomplish a lot.”

  • Big Sandy moves to third round (VIDEO)

    IMG 5025BRIAN BESCH | PCE Big Sandy takes on Woden.

    By Brain Besch

    Big Sandy is now area champions after defeating Woden 59-53 Thursday at Hudson High School.

    The Eagles posed many problems, with an athletic group that shoots well. The game would come down to a battle of free throws. The Wildcats were up to the challenge, hitting 19-of-25 from the charity stripe.

    "Honestly, I thought the game was going to be a little more up and down than it was," Big Sandy coach Kevin Foster said. "Woden really presses a lot and likes to get out and run. They did that early, then they got out of it and really didn't go back to it until they had to.

    "It really turned into kind of a half-court type of game. Those types of games can go either way. We just had one run where we were able to get the lead and hold on to it a little bit."

    Leading the way for Big Sandy was Adrian Thompson with 14 points and Kaden Foster with 13. Also scoring 13 was Josiah Celestine, who came off the bench to provide a deep shooting threat with four 3-pointers.

    "We need Josiah because he can really shoot the ball," Foster said. "Last game, it was a man and full-court pressure type of game. I had to have my better ball handlers out there, so he didn't really see a lot of action. I knew tonight that he was going to get more minutes. He made some big shots for us."

    The Eagles spread their points amongst eight players, with Chance Lawson scoring 15 on five 3-pointers and Chandler Britton had 13 points.

    "It is kind of a different guy for them every night," Foster said of preparing for Woden. "You really couldn't focus on one. They can shoot the ball really well and we knew that coming in."

    Outscoring Woden 15-5 in the second quarter would have an impact on the outcome. With each squad in the bonus during the fourth period, free throw shooting was also key. The 'Cats were 12-for-16 at the line in the fourth. Woden was 7-for-11 in that same span, to keep the contest close.

    "We've had times this year where we have struggled and we have lost games because we would go 7-for-21 from the line. Then we would have games where we were 16-for-19," the coach said. "I feel like lately our free throw shooting has gotten more consistent, which this is the time of year that you want it to be. I knew it was going to be a very physical game and both teams got in the double bonus in the second half."

    The Wildcats will move on to play Garrison in the regional quarterfinal round. The Bulldogs are champions of District 22-2A and nabbed a win over Tenaha Thursday.

  • Big Sandy stings Hornets

    IMG 2267PHOTO BY BRIAN BESCH I PCE Weston Mayer puts up two of his game-leading 17 points for the Big Sandy Wildcats.

    By Brian Besch

    The Big Sandy Wildcats had no trouble disposing of Goodrich Tuesday with a 79-4 win.

    The ‘Cats were dominant from the beginning, establishing a 40-0 advantage before Goodrich could get on the board late in the second quarter. It was the Hornets’ first game of the year and a tough draw against a team that has a running start and has played a few large schools.

    “I told our kids it was going to be like this,” Goodrich coach Lester King said. “You have to play hard and I just wanted to see some hustle. They are young and they are freshmen.”

    King's lone senior went down in the first half with an apparent ankle injury, leaving five inexperienced Hornets on the floor to fend for themselves. With Garzon down, Goodrich had four freshmen and a sophomore that did not play last year on the floor without a bench.

    “Garzon is the only senior and we have to get ready for January,” King said. “Some kids have to learn the hard way and they think they are ready to play and really good, but it is all about defense and hustle. We didn't have any defense out there tonight and we didn't have any hustle. We are going to get better at that. This is just embarrassing, but we are going to get better at defense and hustle. You got to work at this game. This is good for them. Now they see.”

    For Big Sandy, they have played up in classification versus southeast Texas schools in Orangefield and, most recently, Bridge City.

    “It was our first game back since a loss on Tuesday and coming off of Thanksgiving, so it was good to knock off the rust a little bit,” Big Sandy coach Kevin Foster said. “With Covid, I've kind of broken everything into small seasons. We had five games before Thanksgiving, this is our first of seven before christmas, so we are trying to break everything down into small seasons.”

    All nine Wildcats put up points Tuesday, led by Weston Mayer with 17, Dante Williams with 14 and Kaden Foster with 10. For Goodrich, Exavier Henderson had both buckets.

    Big Sandy as a group looked polished after a more uneven performance in Onalaska a few weeks before. Jumpers were falling, passes were crisp and the defense fought hard to keep the Hornets off the scoreboard.

    “In the second half, we really try to focus on the execution side of things. I thought we did some of that,” Foster said. “We will keep practicing and getting better and we’ve got a lot of improvement to make.”

  • Boyce completes goal of winning state

                                   JASON CHLAPEK I PCE Onalaska senior William Boyce was the first runner to cross the finish line in the Class 3A boys state cross country Meet on Monday, Nov. 23, in Round Rock. The new state champion finished the race with a season-best time of 15 minutes, 38 seconds.

    By Jason Chlapek

    ROUND ROCK – William Boyce had a trio of goals in mind going into the 2020 cross country season.

    The first goal was to win a district championship – check. The second goal was to win a region championship – check.

    The third goal was to win a state championship. Check.

    Boyce ran a personal-best time of 15 minutes, 38.72 seconds to win the Class 3A boys state championship Monday afternoon at Old Settler’s Park in Round Rock. The Onalaska senior completed his cross country career with four trips to the region meet, four trips to the state meet, three district championships, a district runner-up, two region championships, a third-place finish in state and a state championship.

    “During the whole race, everyone was staying in a pack and I was a little scared to be honest because I know the guys here are just as fast as I am,” Boyce said. “But on that last corner, I was digging deep and I had all of these people here supporting me so I wanted to bring home a gold medal for them. I thought about my family during that last portion of the race and I didn’t want to disappoint them so I gave it my all. My legs were burning at the end, but it was worth it.”

    Boyce defeated race runner-up Marco Rey of Presidio by 13 seconds (15:51.78). Despite missing gold by 13 seconds, Rey and his Presidio teammates claimed the team state championship.

    Now that Boyce completed the triple crown of cross country – district, regional and state championships – he'll be gunning for a quadruple crown in track and field. He competes in the 1,600 and 3,200-meter runs in track.

    “I have to go do the same thing in track – win district, area, regionals and state in the mile and two-mile,” Boyce said. “I think it’s an amazing goal that I set this year and the fact that I accomplished it means a lot to me. I’ve been here four years and decided this was the year I could do something and win the gold.”

    Boyce was not the only Onalaska runner who participated in Monday’s state meet. Fellow senior Brady Neuman completed the race with a personal-best time of 17:15.78.

    “I was hoping to run a sub-17, but it didn’t quite happen,” Neuman said. “I’ll take what I can get. I felt good and this is a beautiful course. This was a lot of fun. This gives me good motivation going into track and field season.”

    Like Boyce, Neuman also competes in the 1,600 and 3,200-meter runs in track and field. He broke down how his times would be beneficial in track.

    “My first mile was 5:10, which is close to my PR in the mile,” Neuman said. “I was about an 11-flat in the two-mile mark, which would be a PR. If I PR on a cross country course, I should do well on a flat track surface. My goal for every meet is to PR, but this was my last cross country meet so I was definitely swinging for the fences. I’m satisfied with what I did.”

    In addition to qualifying for state, Boyce and Neuman led the Onalaska boys cross country team to its seventh consecutive district championship on Oct. 29 in Anderson. Neuman also participated in his second straight state meet on Monday.

    Goodrich senior Joacxi Garzon competed in the Class A boys meet Monday morning and finished 23rd with a personal-best time of 17:23.32. He competed in his third consecutive state meet.

    “I felt like I ran my best,” Garzon said. “I had a pretty good race and left it all out there.”

    Garzon also had some motivation Monday morning. His older brother, Isaiah Garzon, was there to cheer him on.

    “Isaiah told me that it wasn’t my first time running out here and I know what to expect, so focus and give it all I have,” Garzon said. “My main focus was to stay up with the pack when I ran and keep a good pace.”

  • Boyce follows family footsteps, signs with Sam

    Boyce FamilyJASON CHLAPEK I PCE Onalaska senior William Boyce (seated) signs a National Letter of Intent with Sam Houston State University to run cross country, indoor track and field, and outdoor track and field Wednesday afternoon at Onalaska High School. Joining Boyce is (standing from left) sisters Ginny and Katie Boyce, mother Terri Boyce and father Charles Boyce.

    By Jason Chlapek

    ONALASKA – It could be said that the Blue and Orange of Sam Houston State University runs through William Boyce’s veins.

    His parents, Charles and Terri Boyce, met at the school. His paternal grandparents attended there as well.

    On Wednesday, William signed a National Letter of Intent to run cross country, indoor track and field, and outdoor track and field at SHSU, making him a third-generation Bearkat. He also hinted that although other schools were in contact with him, SHSU was always the front-runner.

    “Since I was young, I’ve always wanted to go to Sam,” Boyce said. “My parents graduated from there and my dad’s parents graduated from there. It’s always been close to home and close to my heart.”

    Not only is Boyce going to be a third-generation student at SHSU, but he’ll also be a second-generation athlete at the school. His mother, Onalaska cross country and girls track and field coach Terri (Sheppard) Boyce, played basketball for the Lady Kats from 1996-2000.

    While Boyce still has his senior track and field season coming up, in which he’ll participate in the 1,600 and 3,200-meter runs, he had a decorated cross country career at Onalaska, which included a Class 3A state championship, a Region III-3A championship and a District 23-3A championship this past season. Throughout his four-year tenure, Boyce had four trips to the region meet, four trips to the state meet, three district championships, a district runner-up, two region championships, a third-place finish in state and a state championship.

    “Onalaska has a great legacy in cross country,” Boyce said. “It’s the most successful sport and it helps that we don’t have football. We also have good academics and I’d rather be more sound academically than athletically.”

    Following the family footsteps seems to be a trend for Boyce. He plans to major in education and become a teacher and coach.

    While Boyce is familiar with cross country in the fall and (outdoor) track and field in the spring, he’s adding indoor track and field to the mix. Indoor track and field season takes place in the winter.

    Boyce will continue to run the 1,600 and 3,200 in outdoor track and field, and will run the 1,500 and 3,000 in indoor season. He’ll also run a little more in cross country – 6.2 miles instead of 3.1.

    “I’ll have my hands tied with three sports and I won’t have much time to relax,” Boyce said.

    While Boyce has career aspirations of being a teacher and coach, he’s keeping his options open if something else happens.

    “I might decide to be a professional runner,” Boyce said. “I think that would be fun. I’d always have that degree to fall back on (if it doesn’t work out). Running professionally has never been a big dream of mine so if it doesn’t happen, no big deal. If it does happen, I’ll take advantage of it. If I run in the Olympics, that would be pretty cool, too.”

  • Bulldogs chomp Warriors, 28-14

    PSX 20201030 233925PHOTO BY ALBERT TREVINO A Corrigan-Camden wide receiver hauls in a pass as a Warren defender hangs on for dear life to try and bring him down Friday night.

    By Albert Trevino

    The Corrigan-Camden Bulldogs defeated the Warren Warriors 28-14 on Friday.

    It was the first district win for new head coach Brett Ratliff, who finally witnessed real-game progress under his offensive system.

    "We have gotten better every week. I think we are finding weaknesses in different defenses. Sometimes, we have to run a little more or throw. Since we can play multiple, we are able to exploit those things." said Ratliff after the game.

    The Bulldog defense had another strong performance, making crucial third- and fourth-down stops throughout the game.

    "We definitely played a full team game tonight. When our offense stumbled, getting inside the red zone and not putting one in, our defense picked us up." Ratliff said.

    It was also a breakout game for Bulldog sophomore quarterback Christian Hood, who ran for three of Corrigan's four touchdowns.

    "[Hood] is a great athlete and has a heart on him." said Ratliff. "He never gets rattled and plays even keeled like a quarterback should. But he also plays physical like a running back."

    The Warriors scored first with an early touchdown by senior running back Kevin Kirk.

    Corrigan responded with Hood scoring his first rushing touchdown to tie the game 7-7 in the first quarter.

    A turnover on downs by Warren in the second quarter gave the Bulldog offense a short field and a chance to take the lead. Hood finished that drive with 11-yard touchdown run to go up 14-7 at halftime.

    The Bulldogs stretched their lead in the third quarter, as sophomore running back Anthony Harrell broke free for a 50-yard touchdown run. That score gave Corrigan a 21-7 lead going into the fourth.

    Warren's offense would keep fighting, with help from a personal foul call that kept a late possession alive. The penalty was immediately followed by a 43-yard touchdown run by Warrior sophomore back Jeremy Smith to make it a one-score game.

    Corrigan answered on its next possession, with Hood scoring his third rushing touchdown to help seal the win.

    Corrigan's final game of the season will be this Friday at home against the Newton Eagles.

  • Bulldogs knock down 12 treys in blasting Elkhart

    IMG 0767LARRY LAMB | HCC Crockett’s Delvin Walker launches one of his seven three-pointers against Elkhart in the district opener.

    By Larry Lamb

    You’d never know the Crockett Bulldogs had only played two games before their district opener.

    The Bulldogs swooshed in 12 three-point shots as they raced past Elkhart 86-39 Tuesday, Dec. 15 at The Hop in Crockett.

    “This was only our third game with probably just 15 practices,” said Bulldog head coach Jordan Caldwell, noting that Elkhart had played eight games and came in with a 4-4 record.

    The Bulldogs jumped out to a 25-10 first quarter lead and increased it to 50-29 by halftime. Outscoring the Elks 18-9 in the last two quarters, Crockett carried a 68-28 lead into the final period.

    The Bulldogs put on a three-point shooting clinic behind junior Delvin Walker, who buried seven from behind the arc. Jadyn Collins drained two while Tayshawn Simon, Ty White and Ja’Lyne Carruthers each nailed a trey for a team total of 12.

    Walker finished with 25 points to pace the Bulldogs. White tossed in 13 points, all in the first half, while Keshun Easterling and Jadyn Collins booked 11 and 10 points, respectively.

    Rounding out the scoring were Chris Purvis with eight, Courtney Byrd six, Carruthers four and Simon three. Carlester Nealy, Bre’Dron Tucker and Jalen Patton chipped in two apiece.

    Elkhart sophomore Cale Starr pumped in five treys and accounted for 28 of the Elks’ 39 points.

    “I’m very satisfied with the way we played tonight. As a unit everybody did good. Elkhart played a heck of a game,” Caldwell continued.

    He said individual standouts were Delvin Walker with his seven three-pointers, point guard Ty White and guard Tayshawn Simon. “Delvin’s only a junior so his future playing basketball is very bright,” added Caldwell.

    Caldwell noted the Bulldogs only practiced once before their 56-36 season opener loss New Waverly.

    “Hats off to New Waverly. They’re a great team,” said Caldwell, noting that New Waverly has earned a spot in the state polls. New Waverly (9-1) was ranked No. 14 in the TABC poll issued Dec. 21. Crockett was ranked No. 7 in early polls but has since dropped out.

    “We’re still learning. We’re obviously young but we have a lot of players who came back. I think we definitely have the potential to go far,” said Caldwell.

    The Bulldogs (3-1, 2-0) closed out pre-holiday action by beating district rival Groesbeck 87-46 on Dec.18.

    Before resuming district play Jan. 5 at Buffalo, Crockett will travel to Pollok Central Dec. 29 and host a varsity home game Dec. 31 at noon against the East Texas Archers, a team comprised of homeschool students in the Lovelady area.

  • Coldspring runs past Shepherd, 73-51

                                   JASON CHLAPEK I PCE Coldspring-Oakhurst guard Duke Lawniczak (with ball) puts up a shot in traffic against a host of Shepherd defenders.

    By JASON CHLAPEK

    COLDSPRING — It was nothing new for the Coldspring-Oakhurst and Shepherd boys basketball teams when they faced each other last week in Coldspring.

    The Pirates operated out of a half-court set and got the ball inside to 6-foot-11 post Bradley Davis, while the Trojans ran and pressed. In the end, Coldspring’s full-court press proved to be too much for Shepherd as the Trojans forced 42 turnovers, including 33 steals, to run past the Pirates, 73-51, on Dec. 1.

    “We always press,” Coldspring coach Greg Devers said. “That’s our thing since we’ve always been here. Two years ago, we averaged about 99 points a game in district. Last year in the state semifinal, we pressed the No. 1 team in the state (Dallas Madison). That’s our bread and butter. We don’t like to get in a half-court game. We like to play up-tempo and take as many shots as we can.”

    Shepherd coach Jeremy Bennett knew what to expect as well. He also said last week’s game wasn’t the first time his team saw the full-court press.

    “They’ve been pressing since forever and it’s nothing we haven’t seen,” Bennett said. “Every team we’ve seen has pressed us.”

    The presence of Davis is one of the main reasons why teams press the Pirates. Nonetheless, the senior post still recorded a triple-double — 24 points, 13 rebounds, 10 blocks.

    The main culprit for Shepherd’s turnovers may not have been Coldspring’s full-court press, however. It may have been the absence of point guard Trey Stacey.

    “One thing that hurt us is we didn’t have our starting point guard,” Bennett said. “That hurt us with turnovers. He was in close contact with someone who tested positive. Trase Thiessen has handled the ball for us. It hurt a lot not having him. We got after them, but not having our full roster hurt us. I’d love to play them again with my full roster. It might be a different story.”

    The Pirates led once in the contest, 13-12, late in the first quarter. But the Trojans closed out the quarter on a 6-2 run, which included a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from Luke Monroe, to take an 18-15 lead after one frame of play.

    Monroe’s 3-pointer was the start of a 13-0 run for Coldspring (4-0), who built a 28-15 lead that would not be relinquished. The Trojans led 34-23 at the half and 54-41 after three quarters.

    Duke Lawniczak led all scorers with 37 points for Coldspring. Cameron Shaw-Rucker had a double-double with 11 points and 10 steals to go with seven assists, while Dante Eldridge chipped in with 11 points and nine rebounds.

    “Practice makes perfect and I watch Trae Young a lot and the way he flicks his wrist,” Lawniczak said. “Just pray that it goes in. I like to go in the paint, but I like to take the shot when I feel like I have it. We need to play with the same energy. We’ve won district every year since I was a freshman. We haven’t lost a game in district and I pray that we can do it again.”

    Shepherd (5-2) also received 8 points and 10 rebounds from Dillen Johnson. Carlos Renovato and Christian Castillo also contributed with 8 and 7 points, respectively.

    The Pirates bounced back from their loss at Coldspring with a 56-40 victory at Madisonville last Saturday. Davis led the way with 22 points and 15 rebounds, while Johnson and Renovato had 13 and 10 points, respectively.

    Prior to last week’s loss, Shepherd’s only other defeat was a 64-53 setback at the hands of Class 5A Kingwood Park. The Pirates also have victories against defending 2A state champion Shelbyville; 5A teams Montgomery and Cleveland; and fellow 4A West Orange-Stark.

    Coldspring followed up its double-digit win with a pair of nail biting victories against 4A programs Bridge City and Orangefield last week. The Trojans defeated BC, 65-59, last Thursday and edged Orangefield, 64-62, last Saturday.

    In the win against BC, Lawniczak led with 28 points, while Eldridge recorded a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds. Statistics were not available from the win at Orangefield.

    “This is my sixth year at Coldspring,” Devers said. “I like to press — 32 minutes of full-court pressing. We pressed when I was at Manvel and Stafford. I learned it from Earl Berry at Channelview. There was a year where we scored 100 points 14 times in a season.”

    After qualifying for the state tournament a year ago, the Trojans seem to be in reloading mode as opposed to rebuilding.

    “Our record the last two years is 71-9 and my junior varsity’s record is 40-3,” Devers said. “I have four returnees — all four of them start. I also have three move-ins that have helped us out as well. I have 11 guys who I can put on the court and they’re going to give 120 percent.”

    The biggest obstacle isn’t an opponent on Coldspring’s schedule, according to Devers, who’s team hosts 2A No. 1 Martins Mill at 12:30 p.m. Saturday. It’s Covid-19.

    “Our schedule changes every day and every time I receive a phone call from a coach, I think he’s going to cancel,” Devers said. “Anytime an administrator comes into my classroom, I think one of my players has Covid. We’re playing it day-by-day right now.”

  • Coming back to win

    IMG 4067BRIAN BESCH | PCE

    By Brian Besch

    The Goodrich Lady Hornets staged a fourth-quarter comeback to pull off a 49-41 upset over rival Leggett Tuesday night. 

    Leggett had an impressive shooting performance in the third quarter. The visiting Lady Pirates hit five shots from behind the arc to take a 34-25 advantage going into the final period. 

    "We had to go man because we were letting them shoot too many threes," Goodrich coach Khadijah Carter said. "I told them that we have to play tight defense. Once we get the ball on offense, get the ball inside and just go."

    They Lady Hornets did just that. The defense never let up, and the team used a size advantage to rebound and collect points near the rim.

    "Size made a huge difference," Carter said. "I told them if we could get the ball inside, they cannot stop us. No team can really stop us inside, but we've got to get the ball inside first."

    Goodrich went on a 12-1 run to open the fourth quarter and take their first lead of the contest at 37-35 with 3:55 remaining. 



    "In the second half, we got too relaxed and there was a big swing," Lady Pirate coach Terri Barlow said. "Goodrich wanted it more than us. We had too many turnovers and we really weren't in it.

    "Rebounding killed us, it gets us every time with the inside game. We really can't stop the inside game."

    Goodrich was led by Brionna Passmore, who was tops in the game with 24 points. Latrina Morgan had 11. Erika Hansen was the high point for Leggett, scoring 20. Kylie Valderez had nine points on three long-range jumpers.

    This marks the third district win for Goodrich, with the first two coming over Burkeville. The first-year coach said it is the biggest win of her young career to this point.

    The loss knocks Leggett down to fourth place in district. The Lady pirates we'll need to win their in their final three games over Chester, Burkeville and High Island to have a shot at the postseason.

    "When we got down going into the fourth, that kind of made me nervous," Carter said. "Even though we missed a lot of free throws and a few careless passes, I feel like this may be our best game."

  • Completing series sweep (VIDEO)

    IMG 4148BRIAN BESCH | PCE

    By Brian Besch

    The Leggett Pirates scratched out an early lead and maintained an advantage in their annual road game at Goodrich, winning 53-39 Tuesday. 

    Behind a 29-point performance from Chase Parrish, the Pirates played well on both ends of the court. The Hornets struggled to consistently score, ultimately failing to keep pace with the defending district champs.

    "We played good, I am proud of our team and we played good team ball," Leggett coach Sean Edwards said. "We played fundamentally sound and we are blocking out a little more to get rebounds. We kind of let up a little bit and gave up some cheap fouls later.

    "We are playing more team ball and limiting our turnovers a little bit more. We're going inside and drawing some more fouls. It is the second half of district, so we will be alright."

    Pirate Garrett Francois had 10 first-half points and 11 for the game, while Varian Flournoy added six. For Goodrich, Joacxi Garzon had 19 points and Isaiah Sapio had eight.



    After a lone 3-pointer in the first period, Parrish filled the stat book over the next three frames.

    For Goodrich, the year has been a struggle. There has been inconsistencies in team chemistry and a lack of experience. 

    They did improve as the game progressed. Totaling just 13 points in the first half, they scored 10 and 16 points in the third and fourth quarter, respectively.

    "You've got to rebound and play defense," Goodrich coach Lester King said. "We have had a hard time all year long scoring. The game was kind of good at the beginning, but they just out-hustled us and they wanted it more than we did. We didn't want it.

    "The only difference between them and us tonight was they played defense and hustled when we didn't play any. You can't win like that."

    If the Pirates win their remaining games, it could cause a three-way tie with Chirino and Zavala.

    Edwards said he believes his team can run through the rest of the district schedule unscathed.

    "I think we can. I believe in my guys and they are helping me out. I always get feedback from the kids and they always know what's going on when they are on the court. They tell me what we need to do. I think we can win the next five games. We are finally improving and we are peaking. We are getting better and better."

  • CORRIGAN-CAMDEN FALLS TO ELKHART (VIDEO)

    IMG 2722BRIAN BESCH | PCE The Corrigan-Camden Bulldogs playing Elkhart on Friday December 11, 2020 on the north end of Polk County.

    COSTLY MISTAKES

    BY BRIAN BESCH

    CORRIGAN — The Corrigan-Camden Bulldogs lost a fourth-quarter lead to Elkhart and eventually the game 46-41 Friday on the north end of Polk County.

    Trailing for much of the contest, the ‘Dogs slowly narrowed the gap in each quarter after the first.

    “I thought we played well enough to win. We just didn't execute late in the game, which caused us to lose,” Corrigan-Camden coach Andrew Kirkindoff said. “I think it is kind of the same story. We play well enough, but in crunch time, we end up turning the ball over, making mistakes that cost us. I tell them all the time that it is our mistakes that is causing us to lose games. We are playing well enough, we just have to fix us.”

    Corrigan-Camden versus Elkhart video

    The Bulldogs looked a bit hurried on possessions early on, falling behind on the scoreboard.

    Corrigan-Camden then seemed to run its offense well in the fourth quarter, patiently passing the ball and looking for open attempts. They took the lead and held it for nearly half the period. A quick run by Elkhart frustrated the Bulldogs, causing them to again settle for outside shots.

    “I think that is just that we are young and starting a freshman. Most of the other ones are sophomores and a junior. Most of them are young and played JV last year, so it is just experience. I knew that there were going to be some Growing Pains early, but hopefully we can get this out of the way now and when we get to District we will be able to overcome them.

    Tony Cooper led the Bulldogs with 15 points, Braylan Harrell had nine and Tra Thomas had eight. For Elkhart, R.J. Moore was tops on the night with 21 points, Cale Starr had nine and Josh Davis added eight.

    The Bulldogs now sit at 2-4, with both wins coming in the last week. They defeated the Oilers of West Hardin (57-47) and Chireno (53-51).

    The next game for Corrigan-Camden will come on the road Tuesday, as they face Alpha Omega Academy in Huntsville.

  • Corrigan-Camden volleyball ends 2020 season as area finalists (VIDEO & GALLERY)

    corrigan camdenBRIAN BESCH | PCE Lady Dogs end season as area finalists

     
    By Brian Besch

    TOMBALL- Corrigan-Camden saw its season come to an end in the area round of the playoffs Monday, dropping a 25-17, 25-20, 25-10 match to East Bernard at Tomball High School.

    The Lady Dogs started the first set in a 4-0 hole, but closed to within one point on a handful of occasions. Up 11-10 on Corrigan-Camden, the Brahmarettes scored eight of the next nine, leading to a 1-0 advantage.

    In the second set, the Lady Dogs held a lead as large as four points before losing by five.

    “We came out and played,” Corrigan-Camden coach Sage Gardner said. “We saw East Bernard two years ago, so I was worried about us being a little tentative, but they came out and played their butts off. My group has all of the heart and hustle, and that’s why we’ve gotten this far.”

    The Lady Bulldogs have had some rough draws in the past few years, with East Bernard also the opponent two years ago, Hardin last year, and the Brahmarettes in 2020. Both schools are volleyball powers in the state.

    This particular group of seniors has been with Gardner since the seventh grade, the first to do so since that level.

    The seniors include Kallie Kelm, Essense Sanders, Micah Hughes, Aundrea Cuevas and Jennifer Vazquez.

    “I’m losing five good ones. Each one of these kids are special to me,” Gardner said. “We have been through it all together. They put their hearts into it with blood and injuries and I couldn’t ask for a better group of kids. The group I have coming back next year, they’ll put in the work and they’ll be there too.”

    Corrigan-Camden VolleyballShow Gallery 

  • Crockett boys edge Madisonville in home debut

    IMG 0570LARRY LAMB | HCC Madisonville’s Casey Holliday (4) tries to wrestle the ball away from Crockett’s Chris Purvis-Torres during a non-district game Tuesday, Dec. 8 at The Hop. The Bulldogs won 48-44 to even their record at 1-1.

    By Larry Lamb

    Crockett and Madisonville’s hardwood reunion after a two-year hiatus exceeded fans’ expectations.

    The Bulldogs fended off the class 4A Mustangs in the closing minutes to win their home opener 48-44 Tuesday, Dec. 8 at The Hop.

    Madisonville had an early 9-7 lead but never led again as Crockett went ahead 15-11 at the end of the first quarter.

    The Mustangs got within a point several times over the next three quarters, but Crockett led 24-19 at the break and 35-31 at the end of three.

    After Madisonville opened the fourth with a bucket to make it a two-point game, Delvin Walker heaved in a three-pointer and Jadyn Collins canned a bucket to put Crockett up 40-33 with 6:27 left.

    After the Mustangs cut it to five, Walker slammed down a dunk to put Crockett up 42-35 with 5:15 to go.

    Back-to-back buckets by Madisonville made it a three-point game before Tayshawn Simon swooshed in a trey to give the Bulldogs some breathing room with a 45-39 lead at the 3:30 mark.

    The Mustangs refused to go away quietly, scoring two straight buckets and a free throw to get within a point, 45-44, with 2:41 left.

    After several scoreless possessions by both teams, Walker went back to the hole with :30 left to give Crockett a three-point cushion. Simon went to the line with :18 left and hit the front end of a one-and-one for a 48-44 lead.

    Madisonville missed the front end of a one-and-one with :13 left but got the rebound and put up an errant shot that was knocked out of bounds. The Bulldogs inbounded with :11 left and ran out the clock.

    Six Bulldogs scored, but none were able to crack double figures. Collins (1 trey), Simon (2 treys) and Walker (1 trey) scored nine apiece. Chris Purvis-Torres had eight, Tyvondrick White seven (1 trey) and Courtney Byrd rounded out the scoring with six.

    Madisonville’s Casey Holliday was the only double-digit scorer for either team with 16.

    This was only the second game for the Bulldogs while the Mustangs had already played six games.

    After starting their district schedule against Elkhart and Groesbeck before the holiday break, the Bulldogs will sandwich in a pair of non-district games with Pollok Central on the road Tuesday, Dec. 29 and East Texas Archers of Lovelady at home on Dec. 31. The Archers team is comprised of home school athletes in the area.

    Crockett gets back to district action Jan. 5 at Buffalo.

  • Crockett knocks off unbeaten Malakoff

    IMG 1146LARRY LAMB | HCC Crockett senior Ty White glides to the basket during the Bulldogs’ 60-57 area round victory over Malakoff.

    By Larry Lamb

    Malakoff came into the area round unbeaten and ranked No. 9 in the state but the Crockett Bulldogs weren’t intimidated.

    Coach Jordan Caldwell’s squad toppled the Tigers 60-57 Thursday night in Palestine and advanced to the third round for a clash with No. 14 Lorena at noon Saturday in College Station.

    Closing out the first quarter with an 8-0 run, the Bulldogs took a 15-5 lead.

    Malakoff got within seven in the second quarter but trailed 27-16 at halftime.

    The Tigers started the third quarter by rattling off six unanswered points to make it a five-point game. Crockett answered with its own 6-0 spurt to push the lead back to 11, however, Malakoff got within six on two other occasions.

    Falling behind 41-33 with 2:36 left, the Tigers staged an 8-1 run to make it a one-point game with :42 left.

    Crockett scored with :25 left in the third to go up 44-41.

    The Bulldogs pulled away in the fourth with an 11-2 run that stretched their lead to 55-43 with 3:44 left.

    Senior Ty White splashed in a three-pointer and a deuce while senior Chris Purvis canned a bucket for a nine-point lead with 4:17 left.

    The Tigers called a timeout and then heaved up a three-pointer that rolled around the rim several times before falling out.

    After Purvis grabbed the rebound, White was fouled with 3:44 left and went to the line for two technical shots and two free throws. He nailed three of four, putting Crockett up by 12.

    Baskets by Tayshawn Simon and D.J. Walker kept the Bulldogs in front by 11 with 1:20 left, but Malakoff finished strong with a 9-1 run that included a pair of buckets and five-of-six free throw shooting to close the gap to three with 11.4 seconds left.

    The Bulldogs, who only made one of seven at the line down the stretch, missed an opportunity for two insurance free throws with 3.6 seconds left.

    But their three-point lead was enough to punch their ticket to the third round.

    White, seven of 11 at the line, led the scoring with 16 points. Walker tossed in 11 and Jadyn Collins rounded out double figures with 10.

    Courtney Byrd finished with nine, all in the first half. Purvis had six and Keshun Easterling had four while Simon and Ja’Lyne Carruthers chipped in two apiece.

    The Bulldogs made 13 of 27 free throws for 48 percent and Malakoff hit 17 of 32 for 53 percent.

    Nathan Jones led Malakoff with 16 and Jay Mosley had 14. Klayton Copeland, nine of 13 at the line, followed with 13. Karter Fuller, who fouled out with 3:41 left, scored seven.

    “We knew 24 (Copeland) and 4 (Fuller) were their best players. I’ll take losing but I’m not going to let just one or two players beat me. I know both are a heck of a player but I’ve got 13 guys on my team,” said coach Caldwell. “We mainly focused on 24 defensively. They had several people in foul trouble early and that helped us a lot.”

    “We came out slow in the second half and Malakoff went on that run. We had some guys that were making mistakes and getting down on themselves. I told the guys at this point it’s win or go home, so they rallied together and we got the W as a team. That’s what matters,” added Caldwell.

  • Crockett nips Rogers in bi-district

    IMG 1055LARRY LAMB | HCC Crockett sophomore Jadyn Collins (2) celebrates with teammate Courtney Byrd after a go-ahead bucket by Collins with six seconds left. The Bulldogs won the bi-district game 49-47.

    By Larry Lamb

    The Crockett Bulldogs dug themselves an early 12-0 hole, climbed all the way out and squeezed past Rogers 49-47 in bi-district basketball action Tuesday, Feb. 23 in Bryan.

    With the game tied at 47-all, sophomore Jadyn Collins converted an offensive rebound and putback with :06 left to give Crockett a two-point cushion.

    A deflection by Collins on a last-second trey by Rogers sealed the victory.

    “Rogers is a tough team. They played hard all the way down the stretch. I was telling my guys that we don’t need a repeat of the Franklin game,” coach Jordan Caldwell said in reference to a buzzer shot that lifted district champion Franklin to a 52-51 victory over the Bulldogs.

    The Bulldogs trailed 14-4 after a quarter but dominated the second 16-5 to slip in front 20-19 at intermission.

    Caldwell’s crew opened up a five-point lead late in the third only to see Rogers drain a three-pointer in the waning seconds to make it 34-32 heading into the final period.

    Early in the fourth Rogers wrestled its way in front 35-34 on a three-point play but Crockett answered with its own to regain the lead with 6:05 left.

    The rest of the game was a back-and-forth battle. Crockett never trailed, but Rogers tied the score four times.

    Crockett took its biggest lead of 45-40 on a putback by “big man” Chris Purvis and a three-point play by Collins at the 3:34 mark.

    Rogers hit a trey on its next possession and tied it at 45-all with 2:18 left.

    After a travelling call on Crockett gave Rogers possession, the Eagles put up an errant shot. Ja’Lyne Carruthers grabbed the rebound, took it down the floor and sank a shot off the glass to put the Dogs up 47-43 with 1:20 left.

    When Rogers tied it back up at 47-all with 55 seconds left it appeared the battle would go into overtime.

    Crockett ran down the clock to :14 before Carruthers drove the lane and put up a shot that rolled around the rim and out.

    But luckily, Collins collected the rebound and put the ball in for the game-winning bucket with six seconds left.

    This was only Crockett’s third game with its roster back at full-strength after playing half of its district schedule with a skeleton crew.

    The rust was evident early as the Dogs, plagued by turnovers and missed shots, didn’t dent the scoreboard until the 1:45 mark in the first quarter. Sophomore Courtney Byrd broke the scoring drought and junior D.J. Walker converted a steal into a layup with 10 seconds left, but the Bulldogs still faced a 14-4 deficit at the end of the quarter.

    Rogers seemingly couldn’t miss a shot in the first quarter but then couldn’t hit the mark in the second as the momentum shifted to Crockett.

    After being held scoreless in the first half, Collins booked 12 points after halftime to lead the offense.

    Walker finished with nine, followed by Carruthers with seven, Ty White and Purvis with six apiece, Byrd with five, and Tayshawn Simon and Keshun Easterling with two each.

    Senior Ben Hutka and junior Kade Sebek led Rogers with 15 and 11 points, respectively.

    The Bulldogs made seven of 11 free throws while Rogers hit seven of nine. Most of Rogers’ free throws were by senior Ty Sebek, who knocked down six of seven.

    Caldwell was encouraged by the resiliency his team exhibited.

    “For the most part my guys never gave up but we still have a lot of work to do,” said Caldwell. “We started off horrible and got down 12-0. Then we went on a 20-7 run to take the lead at halftime.

    “We started playing our style of basketball and pushing the ball. I told the guys if you make a mistake just be sure you’re moving fast. I think that was the difference late in the game. We kept pushing the ball and then we started getting some rebounds at the bottom too.

    “We’ll be okay. We just have to keep playing hard and fighting hard,” said Caldwell, whose team faced undefeated No. 9 Malakoff in the area round Thursday.

  • Crockett secures third place in 9-3A (VIDEO)

    Kickoff ReturnPHOTO COURTESY OF LARRY LAMB Trinity’s Marquavian Jaramillo returns the opening kickoff against Crockett Friday night.

    By Larry Lamb

    The Crockett Bulldogs can breathe a little easier heading into the first round of the state football playoffs.

    Coach Jimmy Thompson’s crew took care of business in their District 9-3A DI finale by dominating the visiting Trinity Tigers 39-0 Friday night to secure the third place seed.

    Crockett plays District 10-3A runner-up Anahuac in bi-district while fourth-place Trinity faces No. 8 ranked East Chambers, the District 10-3A champion.

    The Crockett-Anahuac matchup will be played Friday, Nov. 13 at 7 p.m. in Woodville’s Eagle Stadium.

    In other key district matchups Friday, Coldspring defeated Diboll 20-12 to capture the District 9-3A title and will play Woodville Thursday night in Crockett’s Driskell Stadium at 7 p.m. Woodville defeated Anahuac 27-22 but Anahuac took second based on a tiebreaker.

    Crockett’s first touchdown against Trinity was courtesy of the defense.

    A pick-six by sophomore Zandric Anderson on Trinity’s fourth play got the ball rolling and kicker Antonio Cruz put the Bulldogs up 7-0 with 10:51 in the first quarter.

    Anderson foiled Trinity’s second possession when he recovered a fumble at the Tiger 35. The Bulldogs scored three plays later on a 36-yard pass from sophomore quarterback Jadyn Collins to senior Ty White. Cruz, who was perfect on extra points, made it 14-0 at the 8:58 mark.

    After an interception by Keshun Easterling near midfield, the Bulldogs drove to the Tiger 12 before coughing up the ball.

    Pick SixPHOTO BY LARRY LAMB Crockett’s Zandric Anderson returns an interception for a touchdown against Trinity in a showdown for third place in District 9-3A DI Friday night.

    Unable to move the ball, Trinity was forced to punt and a high snap sailed out of the end zone for a safety to give Crockett a 16-0 lead with 4:16 left in the first quarter.

    Another interception by Easterling set up Crockett’s next touchdown. The junior snared the pass and returned it to the Tiger 48, but a penalty moved the Bulldogs back to their 35 yard line. Collins hit White for a 15-yard gain and found Randy Jones on a pinpoint 44-yard touchdown pass two plays later. The PAT put Crockett up 23-0 at the 11:00 mark in the second quarter.

    Crockett only had to travel 22 yards for its next touchdown after forcing Trinity to punt from the 10 yard line. Dennis Simmons picked up 18 yards to set up a four-yard blast by Easterling for a 30-0 lead at the 8:51 mark.

    Late in the first half Trinity reached the Bulldog 27 yard line on the running of junior fullback Andrew Crabtree before turning the ball over on downs.

    Crockett marched down the field but was unable to punch the ball in before fumbling at the Tiger 5 with :42 left in the half.

    After Jones returned the second half kickoff to the Crockett 17, the quick-striking Bulldogs extended their lead when Easterling took it to the house on an 83-yard run on first down just 21 seconds into the third quarter.

    Another high snap on a Trinity punt resulted in a safety that put Crockett up 39-0 with 7:46 to go in the third quarter.

    Crockett attempted an unsuccessful field goal from the 29 yard line on its next series.

    Trinity mounted a deep threat in the fourth quarter behind the running of Crabtree but ran out of steam at the 9 yard line.

    Crockett will also host a Class 4A bi-district game between Jasper and China Spring on Friday at 7:30 p.m.

     

  • Defense, defense, defense (VIDEO)

    IMG 5123BRIAN BESCH | PCE Dante Williams drives to the bucket.

    Big Sandy defeats state-ranked Garrison, advances to regional semifinals

    Watch the video here:

    By Brian Besch

    "I don't even know where to begin with this game," Big Sandy coach Kevin Foster said after the win over Garrison. "If we play them 10 times, we maybe beat them once. I told the kids we don't have to be better than them, we just have to be better than them tonight."

    By playing incredible defense and taking care of the basketball, Big Sandy was better than Garrison Saturday night, winning by a score of 32-28.

    Rarely turning the ball over, blocking out on every shot and constantly harassing the Bulldog offense, Big Sandy had just enough to defeat the No. 10 2A team in Texas.

    Two field goals and four free throws were all the Bulldog offense could muster in the first half. However, Garrison also played well on the defensive end, leading to a 13-8 score at halftime.

    IMG 5148BRIAN BESCH | PCE Josiah Celestine shoots a baseline jumper.

    "Fortunately, they didn't shoot the ball well, because they normally shoot it very well," Foster said. "Our kids stuck to our game plan.

    "We lost the lead and I'm so proud of them because we kept our composure and were able to hang on and make a play late. That's what these games come down to, whoever can make a play late. We were able to do it and I can't believe we are in the regional semifinals."

    Garrison trailed for much of the game and was down a bucket at 40-38 to begin the fourth quarter.

    Within a minute, they took the lead in what would be in a nail-biting final period.

    "We knew we needed to cover (Dayton Dewberry) and (Risten Cook), because they can shoot it," Foster said. "The rest of the guys can shoot, but we were going to take our chances with that and really try to crowd the paint. (Freddy Christopher) is so explosive and quick, we didn't want to let him get to where he needed to be. We did that for the most part. Coach (Darren) Cook is a great coach and he adjusted in the second half. He ran some hi-low stuff and was able to get it to them.

    IMG 5151BRIAN BESCH | PCE Adrian Thompson puts up a 3-pointer from the corner.

    With 20 seconds left to play, the Wildcats were clinging to a 30-28 advantage. Adrian Thompson knocked down two free throws, making it a two-possession contest.

    It would be all the stingy Wildcat defense would need to move on to the regional semifinals.

    Elias Bullock and Adrian Thompson led Big Sandy with eight points each. Risten Cook led Garrison with 10 points and Brad Reynolds had eight.

    LaPoynor will be the next opponent, as the two teams will meet Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at Central Heights High School.