High School Girls Basketball: Tuloso-Midway secures 2nd place with win against Alice
HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS BASKETBALL
TULOSO-MIDWAY 74, ALICE 50
What this game means: Tuloso-Midway secures second place in District 31-4A and will play Port Isabel in the Class 4A bi-district round. The Cherokees end the season at 7-3 in league play ahead of Calallen and Alice. The Lady Coyotes begin the playoffs as the No. 4 seed with the Wildcats' win against Zapata. Alice finishes 5-5 in district and will play Rio Hondo in the first round of the postseason.
Friday's highlights: Both teams traded baskets early and kept things close for the first two quarters. Jacqlyn Villarreal gave Alice a one-point lead on a 3-pointer and Mia Perez made three free throws after being fouled on a 3-pointer to give the Lady Coyotes their final lead of the game at 20-18. T-M held a one-point advantage after the first quarter and led 34-29 at halftime –– the most the Cherokees led in the first half. HeavenLee Vasquez and Abegayle Galindo gave the Cherokees a spark in the second half which led to a 20-point third quarter. Vasquez finished with 13 points in the second half to lead T-M down the stretch. The Cherokees outscored Alice 40-21 in the final two quarters. Perez and Madison Valdez combined for 17 points to lead the Lady Coyotes in the second half.
Friday's stars: T-M's Vasquez finished with a team-best 19 points and Galindo added 14 points to pace the Cherokees' offense. Lily Ybarra and Madison Belford each scored 11 points, and Alayna Gonzalez and Danilee Cedillo combined for 15. Perez scored a team-best 19 points to lead Alice –– including three of the team's six 3 pointers. Valdez and Villarreal combined for 22 points and Sierra Chapa and Randee Hernandez combined for eight points to pace Alice.
Tuloso-Midway coach James Bueno on what changed in the second half: "Cut down on the fouls and control the rebounds. The girls came out and started running up and down playing transition basketball and pushing it up and down the court. The girls played really well all game –– especially in the second half."
T-M senior HeavenLee Vasquez on clinching second place in district: "This win means everything. We really wanted it, and we kind of had a slow start but we know what we're capable of. We wanted to come out here and finish district strong. The second half was about leveling up and doing what we needed to do to win this game."
Alice coach Joseph Grimes on looking forward to the playoffs: "We can always pull something good from a win or a loss. We can build on those things as we go from one game to another. We have to make sure we take what we learned from the year so we can be a solid team in our first playoff game against Rio Hondo."
Alice senior Mia Perez on learning from Friday's loss to T-M: "We played hard and never gave up. T-M came out and their shots were on. I'm still really proud of my team, and I'm excited for the playoffs. We still played hard, and we'll take this loss and get ready for the playoffs."
Next: T-M vs. Port Isabel in Class 4A bi-district, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 12, Kingsville High School; Alice vs. Rio Hondo in a Class 4A bi-district, 6:30 p.m. Feb. 11, Rio Hondo High School.