Lady Mustangs can’t recover from deficit, fall in bi-district
FLORESVILLE -- After finishing in a three-way tie for second place in the district, Nixon-Smiley defeated Stockdale to earn a trip to the basketball bi-district round of playoffs. Unfortunately for the Lady Mustangs, though, Karnes City handed Nixon-Smiley a 51-32 loss in the first round, and ended the Lady Mustangs’ season earlier than expected.
From the opening tipoff, Karnes City came out swinging, dropping in 24 first-period points, while simultaneously holding the Lady Mustangs to just seven. Nixon-Smiley tried to keep pace with the Lady Badgers, but it was to no avail.
Things turned around a bit in the second period, though, as Nixon-Smiley had more success scoring, and slowed the Lady Badger offense dramatically. The Lady Mustangs held Karnes City to 11 points in the second, while tacking on 13 of their own. When time expired in the first half of play, Nixon-Smiley had closed the gap slightly, but still trailed Karnes City by 15. The score at the break was 35-20 in favor of the Lady Badgers.
The momentum swung back over to Karnes City in the third period, as the Lady Badgers dropped in 14 points. Nixon-Smiley was held to just 10 points during the third stanza, and the Lady Badger lead was 19 points to start the fourth and final period of play.
With what would be just eight minutes left in their season, the Lady Mustangs struggled to get back into the game, and were held to just 2 points in the fourth. The defense played well, however, and the Lady Badgers were also held to just 2 points. When the final buzzer sounded, it was Karnes City with the 51-32 win, and the trip into the second round of playoff competition.
Junior Hailey Boatright led the Lady Mustang offense with 7 points in the game, followed by fellow junior Abby Scarbrough and sophomore Alena Alvarez with 6 points apiece. D’Laine Palacio and Savannah Martinez each scored 4 points, Jennifer Flores scored 3, and Kelby Henderson was good for 2 points.
Despite the loss, Nixon-Smiley can still view its season as a success. The Lady Mustangs spent much of the season ranked among the state’s top 20 teams, and the team ended its year with an overall record of 21-10. With most of the team returning next year, the Lady Mustangs should be in a good position to contend for a district title and run into the playoffs.