Alvord earns first playoff win in 14 years, dispatching Tom Bean

By Austin Jackson | Published Tuesday, February 19, 2019.
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Fans in the Tom Bean student section waved a sign that read “Alvord Who??” as the Alvord Bulldogs faced the Tomcats in the 2A Region II bi-district round at Denton High School Tuesday night.

The Alvord boys basketball team celebrates after beating the Tom Bean Tomcats 61-56 in the 2A Region II Bi-District Championship at Denton High School Tuesday night. It was Alvord’s first playoff win since 2005. Messenger photo by Mack Thweatt.

Tom Bean entered the game with a 25-6 record, and Alvord, which came into the game with a 20-11 mark, hadn’t won a playoff game since 2005.

Alvord had some explaining to do. The Bulldogs did just that.

By the final buzzer, it was the Alvord’s players holding up that “Alvord Who??” sign, which had been crumpled and tossed to the ground by the opposing fans, as the Bulldogs celebrated the end of a 14-year playoff drought, dispatching the Tomcats 61-56.

“We’ve been talking about this for the last three years,” Alvord coach Aaron Tefertiller said. “We made the playoffs the first year and the last year, and got exited by Lindsay both years. I told them it would take a group of kids to believe and fight hard and to create a new floor. Hopefully, that’s what we’ve done.”

Alvord advances to face Archer City in the 2A Region II area round.

After the first quarter, it appeared the playoff win would once again elude Alvord as the Tomcats opened up a 15-8 lead.

But Alvord flipped the script in the second quarter outscoring the Tomcats 14-3 to turn the deficit into a five point lead.

The turnaround came from both ends of the floor, led by Alvord forward Treyson Chambers who set the tone defensively with a three emphatic blocks and seven points in the second quarter.

“We just kept the intensity up and kept on attacking,” Chambers said. “We knew what our game was and we just kept on going.”

Chambers finished the game with a team-high 14 points.

Alvord extended the lead to as many as 17 points after a scoring flurry from Alvord’s Hunter Richey.

In the final two minutes of the third quarter, Richey hit a pair of threes and made a reverse layup to give the Bulldogs a 41-27 lead heading in the fourth quarter.

“I just kept telling myself to keep shooting, and eventually I would start hitting to just get this team going,” Richey said. “It was all we needed. Just a little boost.”

After Richey’s eight-point boost, Alvord’s Eli Tefertiller hit a contested three to open the fourth quarter and give the Bulldogs its biggest lead of the night. Tefertiller, Richey, Jared Johnson and Karson Parker each finished the game with 10 points.

In the fourth quarter, however, Tom Bean’s defensive pressure and hot shooting made the game interesting down the stretch as the Tomcats cut the lead down to 56-50 with a little over a minute left to play.

As the Tomcats’ shots kept falling, and the turnovers piled up, Tefertiller’s message to the team was to stay aggressive.

“I just told them to finish, to quit playing timid and quit playing not to lose,” Tefertiller said. “I told them to attack the basket. They were getting easy shots, but we just had to buckle down and get control of the boards.”

Alvord’s Karson Parker elevates for a layup in the Bulldogs’ 61-56 win over Tom Bean in the 2A Region II Bi-District Championship game at Denton High School Tuesday.

After a timeout, Alvord found its footing with Jared Johnson hitting a pair of free throws to ice the game and give the Bulldogs its first playoff celebration in over a decade.

“It’s indescribable, there’s no words for it,” Chambers said. “It feels great.”

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