The Palestine boys basketball team got a crucial win Friday in the race for District 19-3A’s third playoff spot.
Despite scoring only three points in the first quarter and trailing by seven after that frame, the Wildcats managed a 59-43 win over Rusk on the road Friday.
With that win, Palestine pulled itself into a tie with the Eagles for third-place in 19-3A at 2-2. Palestine can move to 3-2 today if the Wildcats can get past Groesbeck, which the Wildcats topped 58-50 in Groesbeck earlier this month.
In the win over Rusk, Shumauri Scott led the way with 13 points, while both Jarrell Owens and Sheldon Watson added 10 points for the Wildcats.
Gee Clark added eight and Ben Luckett seven in the victory, which improved Palestine to 9-14 over and 2-2 in district play.
Games today against Groesbeck at Palestine High School begin at 5 p.m., with varsity boys action slated to start around 7:30 p.m.
SLOCUM 59, Lovelady 57
The Slocum boys’ basketball team didn’t lead rival Lovelady after any of their game’s first three quarters Friday.
But, the Mustangs did lead after the fourth — the only lead that really matters.
Slocum constantly battled back from deficit after deficit against the rival Lions, earning a 59-57 victory to move to 3-2 in district play.
More importantly, the Mustangs’ win moved them out of their tie with Lovelady and into sole possession of third place in District 20-A, Division I.
Lane Shugart led Slocum with 16 points, while Spence McDonald had 14 and Nathan Edwards added 11.
Connor Dickson had seven and Colton Dickson six in the victory.
Slocum hits the road today to take on Normangee, which earned its first district loss Friday at the hands of district-leading Grapeland. Games begin at 4 p.m.
H.S. GIRLS BASKETBALL
PALESTINE 64, Rusk 34
Dana Whitehead matched the scoring of the entire Rusk team, leading the Palestine girls’ basketball team to a 64-34 win Friday, a win that keeps the Ladycats playoff hopes alive.
Whitehead added five steals, five rebounds and four assists to her crowded statline for the night, while Paradyse Page added 16 points, six steals and five assists.
With the win, Palestine moves to 2-3 in district play and faces its biggest game of the season today at home against Groesbeck.
The Lady Goats come into the game 2-4 in district play and will have only one district game remaining after the Palestine game, against last-place Rusk.
A Palestine win would move them ahead of Groesbeck in the standings, for now, and would assure the Ladycats of no worse than a tie for third-place with the Lady Goats, who defeated Palestine 57-54 earlier this month.
A loss to Groesbeck would mean that Palestine would need to defeat either No. 9 Mexia or top-ranked Fairfield, and have Groesbeck lose its finale to Rusk, to make the playoffs.
Games begin today at 5 p.m., with varsity girls’ action beginning at around 6:15 p.m.