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Mabank 2nd, Eustace 4th in tourney
Monitor Staff Reports
EUSTACE–Mabank’s Lady Panthers fell just short in the championship match against Palestine Saturday, while hosting Eustace lost in a shoot-out to Royse City in the third-place match of the annual Eustace Lady Bulldog Invitational soccer tournament. EHSvsMHSgirlsSoccer.jpg (193072 bytes)

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
In a matchup of future district foes, Eustace Lady Bulldog Lashawnda Martin (10) and Mabank Lady Panther Rachel Goth (7) battle for possession of the ball during Mabank's 1-0 seeding match victory Saturday.

Now 3-6-1 on the season, the Lady Panthers were scheduled to face Ferris Tuesday night before hosting Greenville at 7:15 p.m. Friday, Jan. 29.
Tuesday, Feb. 2, the Lady Panthers will host Kilgore for a 7 p.m. match before beginning district play at home against Chapel Hill at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 9.
The Lady Bulldogs were scheduled to visit Kilgore Tuesday night in their final pre-district contest. Eustace’s girls will open district play at home at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 5, against last year’s district champion, Lindale, and then will travel to Whitehouse Tuesday, Feb. 9.
Eustace and Mabank will play twice in district competition, at Eustace Friday, Feb. 12, and at Mabank Friday, March 5.
In a pre-district preview, the Lady Bulldogs (as the winner of Pool 1) and Lady Panthers (as the runner-up in Pool 2) clashed Saturday morning in a seeding match, won by Mabank 1-0.
Eustace was seriously hampered by the loss of last year’s “Sophomore of the Year,” Hallie Mathis, who watched from the sideline on crutches after injuring a knee.
Mabank’s Jennifer Pyle scored the only goal in the contest to enable the Lady Panthers to advance to the championship match.
To reach Saturday’s seeding contest, the Lady Panthers opened with a 1-0 loss to eventual tournament champion Palestine, but rebounded to beat Tatum 4-0. Friday, the Lady Panthers played to a 1-1 draw against North Forney,
Eustace won its pool, opening with a 5-0 win over Quinlan Ford (three goals by Kayla Ward, one by Lashawnda Martin and one by Mathis), and followed that with a 6-0 win over Tenaha (two goals by Mathis, and one each from Chelsea Grimes, Alex Parrot, Brooklyn Duncan and Amanda Herrera).
Friday night, the Lady Bulldogs knocked off Royse City’s Lady Bulldogs 2-1, with Mathis scoring both goals.
In the other seeding match Saturday, Palestine defeated Royse City 1-0.
In the fifth-place match, Quinlan knocked off North Forney 5-2, while Eustace and Royse City (playing for the second time in less than 24 hours) finished in a scoreless tie, won by Royse City, 1-0, in a shoot-out.
Palestine scored two quick goals against the Lady Panthers in the championship match, but the Lady Panthers were unable to penetrate the Palestine defense.

Kemp girls fall to Canton
Monitor Staff Reports
CANTON–In a first-round showdown, hosting Canton Eaglettes took advantage of some one-sided officiating to knock off the visiting Kemp Lady Yellowjackets 52-36 Friday night.
The win gave Canton a perfect 5-0 record in the first round of District 14-3A basketball play, while Kemp (19-8) fell to 4-1 in district play.
Kemp was scheduled to open the second round of district play Tuesday night at Van, who edged 0-5 Eustace Friday night 35-29 to improve to 1-4 in the first round (see related story, below right).
Friday, Jan. 29, the Lady ’Jackets will travel to Wills Point for a crucial second-round matchup.
Wills Point nipped hosting Mineola 39-33 Friday night to finish the first round of district at 3-2, and drop Mineola to 2-3.
Tuesday, Feb. 2, the Lady ’Jackets will return home (where they are unbeaten this season) to host Eustace, and next Friday, Jan. 5, Kemp will visit Mineola, looking to clinch a playoff berth.
Tuesday, Feb. 9, Kemp will host Canton in the season finale, which (if events turn out as anticipated) likely will determine the district’s top two playoff spots.
A win by the Lady ’Jackets in the finale would forge a home-and-home split with the Eaglettes and force a playoff for the championship, while a Canton win would give the Eaglettes the district title and a first-round bye in the playoffs, while Kemp would claim the second-place playoff berth.
“Overall, the game was not typical of the type of performance we have had during the season,” second-year Kemp coach Kent Smith noted later.
“Michelle Ritterbach only had six points (nine below her average) and was hampered physically during the second quarter, finishing the first half on the bench getting treatment,” Smith said. “We only hit two threes (both by Brianna Powell) when we normally have five, and shoot around 19. We only took 12 three attempts.
“More significantly, we had two players foul out,” he added. “I do not want to lay blame on the officiating, but it played a huge role in what happened – the foul count was 23 to seven in their favor, but more significantly, they took 32 free throws to our four; 19 of their 52 points came off free throws.”
The Eaglettes opened a 14-8 lead in the first quarter, and outscored the Lady ’Jackets 18-15 in the second quarter to take a nine-point halftime lead, 32-23.
In the second half, the Eaglettes outscored the Lady ’Jackets 20-13 to forge the final 16-point margin.
“We never got into a 1-and-1 situation, since they only had three and four fouls in each half,” Smith said. “However, Canton was in the double bonus early in each half.
“As I said, I am not laying blame of the outcome on the officials, but the numbers speak for themselves,” he added. “We didn’t do what we were supposed to do.”
The loss overshadowed another excellent game by Powell, who has continued to improve with each contest. She finished with 12 points, added three rebounds, one steal and one assist.
Despite being hampered by physical problems, Ritterbach pulled down nine rebounds and grabbed four steals to go with her six points.
Brandy Simmons had six points on perfect shooting (2-of-2 from the field and 2-of-2 from the free throw line) and three rebounds, while twin sister Brittany Simmons suffered through a terrible shooting night, going 0-for-7.
Brandy Simmons and Amanda Lawrence both fouled out. Lawrence had two points, two rebounds and one steal. Both Powell and Ritterbach ended the game with four fouls each.
Last year’s “Newcomer of the Year,” sophomore Kandace Rose, finished with six points, three rebounds and two steals, while junior Shannon Shipp had two points, two blocks and four rebounds and Shelbie Wright had two points and one rebound.

Van girls edge Lady Bulldogs
Monitor Staff Reports
EUSTACE–Back-to-back steals by the Lady Vandals helped secure a narrow 35-29 victory over the hosting Eustace Lady Bulldogs Friday night.
The road victory helped the 1-4 Lady Vandals keep the Lady Bulldogs (0-5) winless in District 14-3A basketball play.
Eustace’s girls were scheduled to open the second round of district play on the road Tuesday night at Mineola, who finished the first round at 2-3, following a 29-33 loss to visiting Wills Point Friday.
Friday, Jan. 29, the Lady Bulldogs will host Canton’s Eaglettes, who finished the first round unbeaten at 5-0 with a 52-37 win over previously unbeaten Kemp (see related story, page 1B).
Next Tuesday, Feb. 2, the Lady Bulldogs will visit Kemp and then will host Wills Point Friday, Feb. 5, in their final home game of the season.
The Lady Bulldogs will wind up the second round and the regular season on the road at Van Tuesday, Feb. 9. Each evening opens with 4:30 p.m. sub-varsity contests.
Friday’s contest against the Lady Vandals was a nip-and-tuck battle featuring numerous lead changes.
The Lady Vandals opened an 8-6 lead in the first quarter, but the Lady Bulldogs came back to outscore Van 11-7 in the second period to take a two-point halftime lead, 17-15.
In the third quarter, the Lady Vandals outscored the Lady Bulldogs 8-5 to take a narrow one-point lead into the fourth quarter.
The game was tied at 29 with 2:15 left to play before the Lady Vandals put together two quick baskets off their full-court press to take a 33-29 lead, prompting second-year Eustace head coach DaLinda Cassell to call time with 1:37 left.
Eustace came out of the time-out with two clear shots at the basket, but the ball just wouldn’t fall. Eustace then forced a Van turnover, but missed, although Ashlie Phillips went to the line.
Phillips missed the front end of a 1-and-1 situation, and the Lady Bulldogs deliberately fouled Van point guard Chelsey Moore.
Moore hit the front end of a 1-and-1 with 44.9 seconds left to give the Lady Vandals a five-point lead at 34-29.
The Lady Vandals forced another turnover on the ensuing Eustace possession, but were whistled for an offensive foul, giving the Lady Bulldogs possession with about 16 seconds to play.
Eustace again missed a scoring opportunity, and fouled on the rebound, putting Van’s Brianna Wilkinson on the line with 6.8 seconds to play.
Wilkinson hit the front end of the 1-and-1, and a shot by Eustace at the buzzer didn’t fall.
“Our posts played a great ballgame for us,” Cassell said afterward. “Catania (Grant) and Allie Cass have been consistent throughout district play.
“We need to get the ball to them more on offense,” she added. “They do a great job of crashing the boards on offense and defense.”
Cassell said the team’s goal was to go through the second round of play at 3-2, “which is very achievable, if we do the little things right,” she said.
“It hasn’t been the big picture that has cost us games,” she added. “It has been the little mistakes. We plan to correct those.”
The Lady Bulldogs ended with very balanced scoring, as Cass, Grant and Phillips all finished with eight points each, with Harmony Allen adding three points and Jenny McConathy adding two points.


Upcoming games

Girls basketball

Jan. 29
MHS @ Terrell*
KHS @ Wills Point*
EHS vs Canton*

Feb. 2
MHS vs Red Oak*

Feb. 5
MHS @ Mesquite Poteet*
KHS @ Mineola*
EHS vs Wills Point*

Feb. 9
MHS vs Forney*
KHS vs Canton*
EHS @ Van*
(end regular season)
(*District contest)

Boys basketball

Jan. 29
MHS vs Terrell*
KHS @ Wills Point*
EHS vs Canton*

Feb. 2
MHS @ Red Oak*

Feb. 5
MHS vs Mesquite Poteet*
KHS @ Mineola*
EHS vs Wills Point*


Jan. 29
MHS girls vs Greenville
MHS boys @ Corsicana
KHS @ Jacksonville
EHS idle

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