Kilgore’s boys basketball program has ended a couple-of-season drought from the UIL Class 4A playoffs, and Sabine’s boys are looking for a lengthy playoff run.
Those programs are both in a bit of a holding pattern – more on that below – but the girls teams from both schools are in the here and now.
Kilgore’s Lady Bulldogs and Sabine’s Lady Cardinals both had finished their regular season early last week, and knew they were in the postseason.
Both also were to play first-round games in Longview on Tuesday night, following the deadline for this edition of the Kilgore News Herald. See how both fared right now online at kilgorenewsherald.com, and then coverage, of course, in the weekend edition.
Kilgore finished in a three-way tie for first place in District 15-4A, and drew rival Henderson in the bi-district, or first-round, game Tuesday night in Longview at Pine Tree High School. Obviously, the season is over for the loser. The winner will advance to 4A’s round two to meet either Canton or North Lamar – that second-round matchup would likely happen this weekend.
Kilgore is coached by Jeff Coleman, in his first season. It was Coleman, a hall-of-famer in Oklahoma high school basketball, who guided Kilgore’s boys back to the postseason after a 29-year absence just a few years ago.
Sabine’s Lady Cardinals also finished in a tie for first in District 15-3A, and were to meet Jefferson in a first-round game Tuesday night at Longview High School.
Should coach Sara Cantrell’s Lady Cardinals beat Jefferson, they’ll move to the second round and face Queen City, which defeated Prairiland on Monday.
Coach Jerry Timmons’ Kilgore Bulldogs lost to Spring Hill Friday night at home, 50-49, but got into the 4A playoffs anyway, with a combination of results from other district teams.
Kilgore was to finish out the regular season at Timmons’ alma mater, Gladewater, on Tuesday night, and then any and all tiebreakers will be settled in District 15-4A, and the Bulldogs will find out their first-round playoff opponent: Center, Tatum or Rusk. That game will likely happen the beginning of next week.
In the one-point loss to Spring Hill, Spring Hill’s Tyler Caron scored to give the Panthers a 50-48 lead with 52 seconds left. Kilgore’s Seth Thomas was fouled with 20 seconds left, and Thomas hit a free throw to make it a one-point game. But he missed the second free throw. Teammate Elijah Williams got the rebound, but couldn’t get off a shot in the midst of three Spring Hill players, and the time expired. Thomas had 12 for Kilgore, and so did Deiontrae Wheat. Caron had 22 to lead all scorers.
Sabine’s Cardinals won their final two games, a pair of decisive wins over both Winona (83-41) and Harmony (73-56).
The Cardinals, coached by Colby Carr, finished the regular season with a 24-5 record, and 11-1 in 15-3A. They were tied with Troup atop the district, and Troup won a coin flip to go into the 3A playoffs as the number one seed.
Sabine will meet Beckville in the first round of the playoffs at Pine Tree High School next Tuesday, although at press time, a time had not been announced. The Cardinals are playing a warm-up game, as well; see kilgorenewsherald.com now to find out about the playoff game time, and this weekend’s warm-up opponent.
Against Winona, Sabine led 41-19 at the half and never looked back. The Cardinals shot 45 percent from the field, 50 percent from three-point range.
Tray Oliver led with 18 points and six rebounds. Will Shawn had 13 points, including three three-pointers, and five rebounds. Eylan Goodwyn had 10 points, as did Jackson Lutz, who also had three three-pointers.
Nathan Willis had nine points and four rebounds, and Hunter Grotemat had nine as well, and seven steals. Glenn George had five points and six rebounds. Scottie Taylor had six points and two assists. T Taylor had two points and two assists, and Breden Ford had two points and three assists.
It was senior night for Shawn, Lutz, Willis, Grotemat, George and T Taylor.
In the win over Harmony, Shawn had 24 points, seven rebounds, three assists, four steals, and two blocked shots. Oliver had 22 points and nine rebounds. Goodwyn had 10 points, nine rebounds and five assists.
Scottie Taylor had six points, and T Taylor had four, along with five rebounds. George had three points and three rebounds; Grotemat, three points, two rebounds and two steals; and Ford, a point and three rebounds. Willis had four rebounds, and he and Lutz contributed with solid defense.