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HOOPS ROUNDUP: Lady Dawgs perfect in district; playoffs next week

Burnet High School girls' basketball

The Burnet High School girls' basketball team was all smiles after finishing an undefeated District 19-4A campaign in a 39-28 win against Lake Belton on Feb. 8. Courtesy photo

The 2021-22 high school basketball regular season is ending, and several Highland Lakes teams have qualified for the playoffs, while others have one more contest left to play.

The Marble Falls and Burnet girls’ squads begin the postseason Monday, Feb. 14. The Faith Academy of Marble Falls boys’ and girls’ teams host Bryan Allen Academy on Tuesday, Feb. 15, in District 4-2A showdowns. 

Here is a look at this week’s games:

Marble Falls Lady Mustangs 

The Lady Mustangs (21-13 overall, 7-7 District 25-5A) took fourth place in district and a playoff spot with a 59-49 win against Leander Rouse (15-16, 6-8) on Feb. 8.

“About two weeks ago, you would have thought we didn’t have a shot (at the postseason),” head coach John Berkman said. “But we kept plugging away with them, and we were not out of it until the last game.”

The Lady Mustangs face New Braunfels Canyon (26-6, 15-1 District 26-5A champion) in a bi-district championship at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 14, at Fischer Canyon Lake High School, 8555 FM 32 in Fischer.

Against Leander Rouse, Marble Falls trailed by four points at the half before outscoring the Lady Raiders 16-6 in the third quarter for a six-point lead. 

Closing out games had been a struggle for the Lady Mustangs until that win. They lost 36-34 to Liberty Hill on Jan. 28 and 38-33 to Georgetown on Jan. 1. In both games, Marble Falls had leads headed into the fourth but its opponents scored 18 points en route to victories.

“We talked about being able to finish,” Berkman said. “That’s been a focus of ours. No matter the point of the game, you have to be able to do your job. The girls were really focused on that (against Leander Rouse) and did a great job. We couldn’t be sluggish in the third quarter and sluggish in the fourth quarter. The girls did a great job. Against Rouse, we won the second, third, and fourth quarters. That makes a huge difference in your wins.”

The Lady Mustangs now prepare for its matchup with a district champion.

“Canyon is a good solid program,” Berkman said. “They had to beat good teams in their district. They’re going to be a tough opponent for sure. We may be bigger than them across the board. We’ll have our work cut out for us.”

Burnet Lady Dawgs

The Lady Dawgs (15-2 overall, 8-0 district) clinched the 19-4A championship on Feb. 1 before finishing district undefeated Feb. 8 with a 39-28 win over Lake Belton (19-10, 2-6).

“We really wanted to go undefeated,” head coach Rick Gates said. “They played solid defense and made things tough for us. Lake Belton did a good job defensively on us. We were able to win each quarter and gradually pull away and earn a victory.”

Senior post Sydne Massoletti led Burnet with 30 points followed by junior guard Grace Gates with five and sophomore forward Maesyn Gay with four. 

On Feb. 4, the Lady Dawgs beat Taylor 56-35, leading throughout the contest although the Lady Ducks stayed within six points for three quarters. Burnet outscored Taylor 21-9 in the fourth for a comfortable win.

Massoletti had 20 points followed by sophomore Zaria Solis with 12, junior Christina Graves with seven, Gay with six, Gates with four, freshman guard Sydney Lough with three, and junior Kendall Bible and senior guard Karley Denton with two each. 

The coach was equally proud of the junior varsity and freshman teams, which also finished district undefeated. 

“It’s special,” he said. “Obviously, every school in Texas wants to do that.”  

The Lady Dawgs meet Smithville in a bi-district championship at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 14, at Manor High School, 12700 Gregg Manor Road in Manor. Admission is $6 for adults and $3 for students. Tickets are sold online only

Faith Academy of Marble Falls

Faith Academy of Marble Falls boys' basketball
The Faith Academy of Marble Falls boys’ basketball team captured its third consecutive district crown with a 62-44 win over Bryan St. Joseph on Feb. 9. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro

The Flames defeated Bryan St. Joseph 62-44 on Feb. 9 to win the District 4-2A title for the third consecutive year, while the Lady Flames lost 44-30 to St. Joseph. The day before, the Lady Flames beat Austin Waldorf 39-29. Faith Academy plays in the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools.

The Flames (8-8, 4-0) and the Eagles (12-4, 3-2) matched each other play for play throughout the first half, but St. Joseph took a 24-22 lead into the locker room. That was the first district game in which Faith trailed at the break.

“We were unfazed,” head coach Zakk Revelle said. 

The Flames took the court by storm in the third quarter and outscored the Eagles 21-8 behind a 13-0 run in the final five minutes for a 43-32 advantage. That intensity carried over into the final period, when Faith built a 60-40 lead with three minutes left. At that point, Revelle cleared his bench. 

The coach credited several players for their contributions to scoring, defense, and support roles. 

Junior post Brock Davis led Faith with 23 points followed by sophomore guard Gabe Lopez with 16, including four 3-pointers, and junior forward Will Lewis with 13. 

Faith Academy's Morgan Weems
Faith Academy of Marble Falls sophomore post Morgan Weems was the Lady Flames’ top scorer the past two games. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro

Against the Lady Eagles, the Faith girls (8-10, 2-3) couldn’t overcome a seven-point deficit after the first quarter and trailed 19-10 at the half. After three periods, Faith trailed 36-18. In the final period, Faith outscored St. Joseph 12-8. 

Head coach Kat Canada said when the Lady Flames struggle offensively, the defense must get stingier.

“We have to do a better job of boxing out,” she said of the defense. “You can’t beat teams like that when you give them three and four chances defensively. Offensively, we just couldn’t finish (scoring plays).”

Sophomore post Morgan Weems led Faith with 17 points, 12 rebounds, and four blocks, while freshman post Hadley Shipley added six points, sophomore guard Elleson Lehmburg, sophomore forward Claire Poage, and sophomore post Audri Poage each had two points, and sophomore guard Charlee Ehrig scored one point, all unofficial. 

In the win against Waldorf, Weems led with 14 points and 10 rebounds, while Shipley contributed 12 points and 10 rebounds, Claire Poage added nine points, and Lehmberg scored four, all unofficial. 

Faith finishes the regular season against Bryan Allen Academy on Tuesday, Feb. 15. The girls play at 5 p.m., while the boys take the court at 6:30 p.m. Both games are at The Fire Pit, 3151 RR 1431 East in Marble Falls. 

A win against Allen means the Lady Flames will finish second in the district. 

“(My players) showed their growth, and we can do it,” Canada said. “Once we put it all together and know it, that’ll be great. Our defense is cool and all, but we can’t have a sleepy quarter (where we’re not scoring).”

jfierro@thepicayune.com