Lady Cats put in district bind with 51-37 loss to Lindale
By BOBBY "BUTCH" BURNEY | News-Telegram Sports Editor
Jan. 16, 2007 - The Lindale Lady Eagles used the Whitney and Madison show to take a first-half lead against Sulphur Springs on Tuesday. Once everyone else got involved, the Lady Eagles took control of the game.
Lindale guard Whitney Binder and post Madison Killingsworth scored all 30 of the Lady Eagles' first half points and finished with a combined 36 points, almost matching Sulphur Springs' total offensive output, in a 51-37 victory over the Lady Cats at Wildcat Gym.
Killingsworth led all scorers with 24 points (hitting 10-of-12 field goals) and 10 rebounds, while Binder finished with 12 points and five boards as the Lady Eagles took a step forward in the District 11-4A standings.
With the win, Lindale improved to 2-2 in district, 16-9 overall, and took sole possession of third place. Sulphur Springs (1-3, 9-14) fell into a fourth-place tie with Paris, who they play on Friday.
Sulphur Springs stayed close in the first half by hitting six 3-pointers, four of them by senior guard Jessica Savage, who led the Lady Cats in scoring with 12 points to go with four steals and three rebounds.
But, Lindale started shadowing all of Sulphur Springs' outside shooters in the second half and limited them to one make in 10 attempts. That came from Stevie Moore, and it was one of just two Lady Cat field goals in a span of more than nine minutes covering the third and fourth quarters.
The other field goal came on a pull-up jumper by Mackenzie Cross, who had a strong all-around game with eight points, five rebounds and seven assists.
"We shot decent in the first half - Jessica hit four threes. But, you live and you die by that, and the second half we weren't hitting those," said SSHS head coach Tina Carrillo. "They weren't even giving her a chance to launch it. We couldn't find it from anywhere else inside or outside. We didn't run our stuff offensively."
Lindale led 30-24 at halftime because of the inside play of Killingsworth and the outside shooting of Binder. But, the Lady Eagles started pulling away in the third quarter when the other players got more involved offensively. Binder and Killingsworth combined for just one field goal attempt in the third period, but Lindale outscored Sulphur Springs 15-7 as five different Lady Eagles scored points.
Lindale missed just one of its seven field goal attempts in the period, but it didn't matter as Jenna Terry got the offensive rebound and putback.
"You can tell Lindale was in the flow. They were setting screens for one another, they didn't care who got the points," Carrillo said. "You look at the shot chart, and we're launching very low percentage shots while they're getting post moves into layups. It's hard to beat a team when they're taking all the easy shots and you're fighting and clawing for every little outside shot you can get."
Lindale's third-quarter surge gave them a 45-31 lead heading into the fourth quarter, and their advantage reached 18 points (51-33) despite four points in the period by Cross.
Sulphur Springs led just once in the game, at 10-9 on a 3-pointer by Moore, and tied the game one other time, at 24-24 on a 3-pointer by Stefanie Pruitt with 1:42 to play in the first half. But, Killingsworth scored six unanswered points in the final 90 seconds of the half to give the Lady Eagles a lead they wouldn't relinquish.
SSHS finished shooting 30 percent (15-of-50), while Lindale hit 50 percent (21-of-42). Lindale also out-rebounded the Lady Cats 43-30.
The Lady Cats now face realistically a must-win game at Paris (1-3, 8-17) on Friday. The freshmen game tips off the action at 4:30 p.m. The winner of the match will still be in the playoff hunt, while the loser will likely be two games out of third place with five games to play.
"If we take care of business against Paris, we'll take care of T-High. Then, we're back in it," Carrillo said. "We're going to win the next two games, we're liable to win the next four games, and we're liable to win out."
SSHS 34, Lindale 33
The Lady Cats improved to 19-6, 3-1 in district behind nine points, seven rebounds and four steals from JaMonica Hall, who scored five of SSHS' seven points in the final period.
Melanie Hudson added 11 points and nine rebounds, Alyssa Burney scored six points and had four boards, Kayle Askins recorded four points, three steals and four assists, while Chasity Hall (six rebounds) and Linsey Fouse scored two points each.
Lindale 32, SSHS 27
This game was decided at the free throw line, where Lindale shot 38 charity shots, making 15, while SSHS was awarded just five free throws, making three. The Lady Cats (5-17, 1-3) were whistled for 27 fouls on their home floor, while Lindale was called for just nine.
Caitlyn Nix led the Lady Cats in scoring with 10 points, nine rebounds, four steals and three assists, and Tyesha Thomas added six points and two assists.
Bradyn Burney and Kyri Ivery each scored four points. Burney also had three steals and three assists. Ariel Spataro scored two points, Frankeisha Hawkins scored one, while Megan Massey came up with two steals.