The host Ellison Eagles were defeated by Copperas Cove 57-55 on Tuesday. Ellison is now 5-5 in District 8-5A, tied for fourth.

It’s not exactly the place its ever-competitive head coach Alberto Jones Jr. likes — he prefers first place — but Jones remains upbeat.

“We played with heart and intensity in the second half against Cove,” he said. “But we didn’t start playing until we were down by 12 points. Then we got going. But we just gave them too much of a cushion. We started off bad. But our kids played hard late; that’s what we must do for the whole contest.”

Ellison’s offense was in sync late against Cove and the Eagles scored 20 points in the fourth quarter.

“We started playing with confidence in that quarter,” Jones said. “We became determined. We played with emotion.”

Eagles guard Antonio Martin scored 11 points against Cove, including two long-range treys.

“Antonio has come through like that for us before,” Jones said. “He’s one of those guys that when he’s hitting, we’ll try and ride him. That’s what we tried to do tonight.”

As for the making the playoffs, Jones said things are simple.

“We control our own destiny,” he said. “That’s exactly what I told our kids. We know what to do. We still control our own destiny.”

Contact Allan Mandell at or 254-501-7566​ and read his blog on

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