Eldridge McAdams is not altering a thing.
After winning 18 of its first 20 games and climbing to seventh in the Class 6A state rankings, Copperas Cove experienced its first defeat in more than a month Tuesday against No. 12 Ellison.
Despite playing at home, the Lady Bulldawgs could not avoid the upset as the Lady Eagles used an early offensive outburst to catapult them to a 45-35 victory and sole possession of first place in the District 8-6A standings.
Following the loss, Copperas Cove’s head coach admitted he intends to simply move on.
“We’re not going to change a thing,” McAdams said. “We’re going to keep doing what we’ve been doing.
“We’ve got to regroup and focus on a few little things, but I’d go to war with this team any day, because I know what they can do.”
Typically, the Lady Bulldawgs have little issue scoring, averaging 52 points per game during the first three games of district competition.
Copperas Cove, however, struggled from field against the Lady Eagles.
The Lady Bulldawgs exchanged baskets with Ellison (13-5, 3-0) early, playing to a 9-9 tie before Erica Powell’s jumper opened a four-point cushion, 13-9, in the first quarter. The Lady Eagles responded, though, scoring 11 unanswered points to create a 20-13 cushion entering the second quarter.
Then, Copperas Cove lost its shooting touch.
The Lady Bulldawgs missed 41 of their final 48 field-goal attempts, and Ellison exploited the opportunity, preventing Copperas Cove from getting any closer than five points for the duration of the contest.
“We were getting frustrated at times on the offensive end when shots wouldn’t fall,” McAdams said, “and then, on the defensive end, we’d pick up a foul or something because of that frustration.
“But we’ve just got to continue to work, because this one loss does not determine our season.”
Junior guard Jayda Carter led Copperas Cove (18-3, 3-1) in scoring, contributing nine points on 3-of-4 shooting from behind the 3-point arc, while teammates Leah Powell and Kaysha McCloud added seven and six points, respectively. McCloud also finished with a team-high tying five rebounds, matching Erica Powell’s total.
The loss drops the Lady Bulldawgs into a two-way tie for second place with Killeen in the district standings, while San Angelo Central and Waco Midway follow at 2-2.
The Lady Bulldawgs resume district play on Jan. 5, when they travel to face Shoemaker, but before then, they will participate inthe three-day Aggieland Invitational at Bryan-College Station, beginning Thursday.
Copperas Cove opens against Victoria East at 1:30 p.m. with the winner advancing to play the winner between Wylie East and Longview.
The Lady Bulldawgs also have a home game scheduled against Georgetown on Jan. 4 before returning to district competition.
“We would have rather entered the holiday break with a win,” McAdams said, “but now, we’ve got to sit on this loss to Ellison for a while.
“But this tournament will be good for us to get back in the swing of things before we get back to district.”