Playoff loss a year ago serving as motivation for this year's squad

Pete Garcia, Alice Echo-News Journal

A photograph is worth 1,000 words, and for the Alice Lady Coyotes, one particular photograph is worth so many words that's it serves as all the motivation needed to avoid a letdown against Mission High in the bi-district playoffs Tuesday.

The photograph was one published by the Alice Echo-News Journal following the Lady Coyotes' 57-56 heart-breaking loss to Beeville in four overtime periods in the second round of the state playoffs last year. The photo, which coaches pulled out during a pep-talk earlier this season, shows the girls huddled, embracing and crying after that game in which nothing went the Lady Coyotes' way.

"Our coaches showed us that picture before a game and it got us fired up, because we don't want that to happen again," Alice senior Janay Gonzalez said. "We don't want to have another game like that."

The girls have even drawn parallels between the way the team played against Beeville last year and the team's disappointing loss to Robstown in the District 31-4A finale Tuesday.

"Nothing went our way against Beeville last year in the playoffs and nothing went our way against Robstown the other night," said senior Heather Carter. "In a way it's good because the loss to Robstown was our Beeville game for this year. Hopefully, we got it out of our system."

Alice and Mission High will meet in the bi-district round of the Class 4A playoffs at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Falfurrias High School.

The Lady Eagles (16-12) will likely face a much more stable and confident Alice team that the one which fell to the Lady Cotton Pickers Tuesday.

"We just didn't play well in that game and we made a lot of mistakes," said senior Reina Villarreal. "The coaches showed us our mistakes and we went over everything, so I think we learned a lot from losing that game.

"We also know that a team that goes out and makes a lot of mistakes can lose any night. We're going to play better Tuesday."