Faith Academy post Will Lewis and the Flames earned a 70-62 win against Thorndale on Jan. 7. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro
The Faith Academy of Marble Falls boys’ and girls’ basketball teams each earned non-district wins Jan. 7, giving both squads momentum going into district play.
The Flames (5-8) beat Thorndale (16-7, University Interscholastic League District 27-2A) 70-62 to end a seven-game losing streak, and the Lady Flames (6-7) defeated San Antonio Christian School of Castle Hills 53-48.
The Flames start District 4-2A play in the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools on the road at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 11, against Cedar Park Summit, 2121 Cypress Creek Road. Summit doesn’t field a girls’ basketball team.
The two Faith victories illustrated one important trait of both teams: the athletes’ abilities to make plays down the stretch in crucial moments to close out an opponent.
“I felt like tonight we gave incredible effort from the defensive end,” Flames head coach Zakk Revelle said. “I was pleased with the defensive effort overall. It’s a great time to be playing well.”
“They came out ready to win,” Lady Flames head coach Kat Canada said of her squad. “They came out and weren’t intimidated today. I felt like they were ready to go after the jump ball.”
The Flames trailed 17-11 after the first quarter but outscored the Bulldogs 18-12 in the second to tie the contest at 29-29 at the half. The separation came in the third quarter when Faith went on an 8-3 run in the final 93 seconds to increase its lead to 53-44.
“In the first quarter, we missed layups and shots that we normally don’t miss,” Revelle said. “We missed some easy shots. We told our players to keep playing, they’re going to miss shots you contest, just get to the rim and focus.”
Faith was paced by junior post Brock Davis, who had 29 points, including being 4 of 6 from the foul line, while senior guard Case Coleman added 17 points, including 11 of 16 from the foul line with five free throws in the final quarter.
“Offensively, we felt like we were going to get Brock open on pick-and-rolls,” the coach said. “We told our guards to come off quick and pass hard.”
Revelle also commended Coleman’s leadership and ability to handle pressure at the line.
At one point, Thorndale called a timeout as Coleman was going to the free throw line. It didn’t seem to bother the senior, who took the timeout to high-five each of his teammates. Then, when play resumed, Coleman sank his free throws.
“Kudos to him,” Revelle added.
Going into the game, the Flames were on a seven-game losing streak, which is something that could haunt a team. Yet, the Faith boys didn’t let it overshadow the contest.
“When you lose seven in a row, it’s very easy to pack it in,” Revelle said. “But they played with joy and played like they love each other. When you play like you love each other, good things will open up.”
The Lady Flames didn’t flinch against Castle Hills when trailing 16-9 after the first quarter. They simply decided to pick up the defensive intensity and allowed that to dictate their offense as they slowly chipped away at the deficit. By the end, Faith outscored the Lady Eagles 14-4 for a 23-20 halftime lead.
Faith’s largest lead of the second half was 48-42 with 3:40 left in the contest, but Castle Hills wouldn’t concede victory. Instead, the Lady Eagles got to 49-47 with 61 seconds left. That’s when Faith sophomore post Morgan Weems scored a bucket on a press breaker and sophomore guard Elleson Lehmberg added a bucket with 15 seconds remaining to close out the win.
Weems had 14 points and 17 rebounds, followed by freshman post Hadley Shipley with 10 points and 14 rebounds, and sophomore forward Claire Pogue with 10 points.
Canada noted the win was the result of every Lady Flame contributing with a defensive play, forcing Castle Hills into a bad decision, or simply being ready to help when the time came.
She pointed out that sophomore guards Charlee Ehrig and Carly Owens are working on the defensive end to disrupt the other team’s offensive rhythm by “getting fouls and pressuring their best players,” while Shipley and Weems are grabbing loose balls and rebounding.
“Charlee and Carly are really doing the dirty work,” the coach said. “Hadley and Morgan are cleaning it up.”
The win also showed another important characteristic, Canada said: trust.
“I’m glad they trust us and trust themselves and trust their teammates,” she said. “That’s important. As long as they trust themselves, their teammates, and us, it will be a great start to district.”
All stats from the Faith games are unofficial.
The Lady Flames return to the court at 6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 14, against Bryan St. Joseph at The Fire Pit, 3151 RR 1431 East in Marble Falls.