GATESVILLE — Don’t call it a comeback, LL Cool J once crooned.
In China Spring’s case, however, call it a comeback — and a pretty righteous one at that.
The Lady Cougars fell behind by double digits after a quarter and trailed by 15 at the half, but mounted a serious fourth-quarter surge to knock off Gatesville, 58-55, in a doozy of a District 17-4A girls basketball clash on Wednesday night. With the win, China Spring (22-7 overall, 6-1 in district) was able to remain in a tie for first place in the district with Lorena.
Gatesville’s sharpshooting senior guard Rebekah Nolte pumped in a game-best 29 points as the Lady Hornets (17-9, 4-3) buzzed out to a big lead. Gatesville put up 22 points in the first quarter, and held a 47-37 lead entering the fourth, mainly on the strength of Nolte’s shooting, as she drained 3-pointers left and right, finishing with eight treys for the game.
But China Spring exploded in the fourth, outscoring Gatesville 21-8 to steal the win. The Lady Cougars hit Gatesville from all angles – as three players scored in double figures and two more flirted with it. Alex Perkins scored a team-high 14 for China Spring, while Summer Emblem and Gabby Cleveland added 10 each. The Lady Cougars completed a season sweep of Gatesville with the win, as they had a 49-44 victory over the Lady Hornets at the start of district.
For Gatesville, Allaria Jones tossed in 12 points.
No. 19 Midway 43, No. 8 Ellison 41
KILLEEN – The No. 19 Pantherettes used an 11-2 run in the fourth quarter to keep eighth-ranked Ellison at bay, then held off a late Eagle rally at the end.
Midway (24-4, 6-2) moves to within a game of the Lady Eagles (17-9, 7-1) in the District 8-6A title chase. It was the 11th straight win for the Pantherettes, who took a 33-28 edge into the final quarter.
Ja’Naiya Davis scored 13 points for Midway, while Shamaryah Duncan had 11.
Lorena 41, Robinson 22
LORENA — Michelle Runyan swished in 16 points, as the Lady Leopards completed a season sweep of the rival Rockettes.
Alana Armstrong contributed 10 for Lorena, which improved to 21-8 overall and 6-1 in District 17-4A action, tied for first place with China Spring.
Mexia 59, Palestine 40
MEXIA — Keiana Smith and DeModesty Williams had strong efforts as the Ladycats silenced Palestine in District 18-4A competition.
Smith turned in 16 points and Williams chipped in 15 for Mexia (19-7 overall, 2-1 in district), which trails Fairfield in the district standings by a single game.
#8 Temple 70, University 43
TEMPLE — The eighth-ranked Tem-Cats used a series of spurts to leave University behind in a District 18-5A encounter.
University (12-15, 4-3) trailed only 21-13 after a quarter, but Temple had an 8-0 run in the second quarter to gain some additional separation. The Tem-Cats (20-5, 7-0) rode 19 points from Chadricka Pickett and 18 points from 6-1 senior forward Jhakaya Dilworth.
University’s Desirae Mathis led her team with 16 points, including a personal 8-0 run in the first half.
BOYSUniversity 63, Temple 51
It doesn’t matter when you get them, as long as you get them. After a three-game losing streak to open District 18-5A play, the Trojans have now claimed two wins in a row after taking down Temple.
Derek Hopkins had a great night for University (9-14, 2-3) with 24 points, while Justin Williams contributed 15 for the Trojans. University’s wins both came against teams that will be moving up to Class 6A next year in Temple and Waco High.
Dion Washington hit for 15 points and Arius Brown had 14 for Temple (7-19, 1-4).
Rosebud-Lott 92, Rapoport 25
Jeremy Truesdale produced another big shooting night as Rosebud-Lott clobbered Rapoport for a road win in District 17-2A.
Truesdale scored 30 points for the Cougars (15-10, 4-2), which led 50-12 at the half. Jaquorion Johnson, Keith Finan and Brady Hering tossed in 11 points apiece.
Rapoport (4-21, 1-5) was led by Corey Lee’s 10 points.
West 48, McGregor 46
WEST — The Trojans pulled out a nailbiter over district-leading McGregor in one of the more competitive districts in the state, 19-3A.
West (3-3 in the district) trailed by nine points at the half, but turned up the intensity after the break to mount a rally. Thomas Davis helped fuel the comeback with a game-leading 16 points, and Kayman Harold contributed 10 in a balanced effort for the Trojans.
For McGregor (11-13, 4-2), 6-foot-3 forward Imani Jowers and 6-2 senior guard Michael Irons led the way with 11 points apiece. Every team in the eight-team district has at least two wins, and nobody has more than four.