By JUSTIN RAINS
The Westwood girls’ basketball team responded nicely after Friday’s big loss on the road to Central Heights.
Unfortunately, bouncing back just wasn’t enough, as the Lady Panthers couldn’t overcome missed foul shots down the stretch and fell to visiting Crockett, 44-40.
The two teams went back-and-forth throughout, and neither squad could seem to get the upper hand enough to pull away.
Westwood tied the game at 35 on two Mi’Kayla Benson free throws with just over 2-and-a-half minutes to play in the game and, after a Crockett basket, got one free throw from Marialle Boles to stay within one point.
But, what happened less than thirty seconds later changed the game.
Westwood appeared to have a 3-on-2 fast break that would have resulted in the Lady Panthers taking a 38-37 lead with less than two minutes to play.
But, Westwood couldn’t orchestrate the break and instead turned the ball over. The Lady Bulldogs capitalized, turning that possession into a basket and a foul to swing the game by five points and take a 4-30 lead.
Boles got Westwood back to within two with a nice turnaround shot with just over a minute to play, but Westwood got no closer.
The Lady Panthers had a chance after Crockett missed two foul shots up three with 35 seconds to play, but the Lady Bulldogs got the rebound and were able to ice the game from there.
The loss drops Westwood to 11-13 overall and 2-3 in district play. They wrap up the first round of district Friday in Garrison.
Benson finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds in the loss, while Natali Muniz had 11 and six rebounds. Boles added seven points and seven boards for Westwood.
PALESTINE 54, Rusk 42
The Palestine girls’ basketball team opened up District 19-3A play with a 54-42 win on the road in Rusk Tuesday.
The Ladycats got 19 points from Dana Whitehead and 17 from Paradyse Page as their dynamic duo led them to 1-0 in league play.
Palestine will try to go to 2-0 Friday, when they hit the road to take on Groesbeck. Games begin at 5 p.m.
Lovelady 53, SLOCUM 41
Second-ranked Slocum fell to 25th-ranked Lovelady, 53-41, on the road Tuesday for only its second loss of the season.
Lovelady used a big first half to get out in front and stay there, taking a 26-12 advantage into halftime and never looking back.
Landry Lane led Slocum with 15 points, all of which came in the second half.
The Lady Mustangs (19-2) continue district play Friday when they host Normangee. The game is set for 6 p.m.
CAYUGA 76, Dawson 16
Five players scored in double-figures as the Cayuga girls’ basketball team rolled to an easy 76-16 win over Dawson Tuesday.
Both Molly Griffey and Shawnta Knox had 15 points to lead Cayuga, while Madison Spears added 13.
Danielle Anderson had 12 and Madyson Gunnels 11 in the victory for Cayuga, who next faces Hubbard Friday at home. Game time is set for 6 p.m.