CALALLEN — Winners of five of their last six games, the Alice Lady Coyotes are finally exactly where they want to be — playing for the right to move on.

By beating the Calallen Lady Wildcats, 59-49, on the road Friday night, the Alice girls earned a spot in the crossover games between District 30-5A’s North Zone and the South Zone. Alice will face either Flour Bluff or Corpus Christi Veterans Memorial for a spot in the Class 5A state playoffs. That game will likely be played at a neutral site this coming week.

However, before that, Alice will have to battle Tuloso-Midway to settle a second-place tie in the North Zone. The game against T-M is Tuesday. Coaches were still figuring out the particulars of both games.

Either way, the Lady Coyotes have earned themselves a spot atop of the zone standings and a crossover play-in game for a shot at the post season. It’s a big-time accomplishment for a squad which struggled through the first half of the season before figuring things out down the stretch. In Alice’s run leading up to Friday night's game, the only North Zone opponent to beat Alice was zone champion Corpus Christi Ray.

The Lady Coyotes were forced to play come-back basketball against Calallen Friday night. Playing at home, Calallen had a fast start behind post Bailey Tanguma, who scored six points in the first period.

Alice trailed 13-10 going into the second. That’s when the Lady Coyotes seemingly came to life. Alice had 11 points from Jakki Barrera to pull ahead, 29-21, by halftime.

Calallen rallied in the third period to time the game, 41-41. However, the Lady Coyotes put the game away in the fourth with an 18-8 run thanks to seven points from Criselda Cruz. Alice made good on eight of 13 free throw shots in the final period.

Barrera scored a game-high 21 points. Cruz scored 19. Kayla Escobar added eight and Alex Garcia had seven.

Tanguma finished the game as the Lady Wildcats’ leading scorer with 20 points.