SPORTS HEADLINES

Texans falter against Panthers

By Jimmy Alford | Published Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Texans were denied their dream upset over North Crowley by a late-game breakaway. Northwest dropped the bi-district playoff 53-47.

DENIED - A Panther defender slaps the ball from Northwest's leading scorer Elijah Cristman's hands. Messenger photo by Jimmy Alford

DENIED – A Panther defender slaps the ball from Northwest’s leading scorer Elijah Cristman’s hands. Messenger photo by Jimmy Alford

Northwest (17-16, 8-6) played close to the vest for three and a half periods, trading the lead back and forth with the Panthers (27-7, 13-1). The Texans were down only three points going into the third period. The Panthers surged ahead with a 6-0 run, sealing Northwest’s fate and ending their season.

The loss to North Crowley comes nearly a week after another devastating loss to Fossil Ridge that set the Texans in fourth place for District 4-5A.

Northwest’s Elijah Cristman led both teams’ scorers with 17 points. David Ogunwolu followed Cristman with nine for the Texans, and Michael Healer scored seven.

Texans Coach Mike Hatch said North Crowley turned the tide, and his team just fell short.

“We turned the ball over at crucial times. They were big turnovers that you can’t have in a big game like this,” Hatch said. “They got some easy buckets because of it, and we tried to defend against them, but you can’t defend a break away layup.”

Hatch said until that point Northwest did well, dictating the game’s tempo and keeping the score close.

“We played about as good as we can play,” Hatch said. “We did everything we wanted to do except win the game.”

Northwest led the first quarter 11-9, North Crowley fought back hard, but only managed to lead by one point at the half, 19-18. Again in the third period, the Texans matched the Panthers almost shot-for-shot.

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