WACO — With time expiring, Casey Armour delivered just as he did all evening long.
After Cedar Hill senior Tymir King connected on a pair of game-tying free throws with 12.15 seconds remaining in regulation, Ellison called a timeout and devised a plan to get it to its standout guard. After all, Armour made more than half his field-goal attempts as he carried the Eagles offensively.
And in the final moments of Ellison’s playoff opener, the trend continued as he scored in the paint as the buzzer sounded, giving the Eagles a 54-52 victory.
The shot capped off an impressive outing for Armour, who finished with a game-high 27 points on 11-of-20 shooting to go with 11 rebounds, three assists and three blocks.
The performance, however, was almost squandered.
Ellison (31-4) entered the fourth quarter leading 43-39 and saw the cushion inflate to six points as Armour scored off an inbounds pass in the opening moments of the period.
Thanks in part to 3-pointers from Ray Pugh and Montgomery Morris, the Longhorns’ deficit quickly evaporated behind a 9-1 outburst that put them ahead 48-46 before Eagles guard Chandler Sutton responded with a basket to tie the score.
The teams remained deadlocked for more than three minutes until Amir Davis found Armour in the paint for a go-ahead basket, but approximately 90 seconds later, Ellison needed another big shot. This time, D’Marcus Leach came through in the clutch.
With 30.31 seconds left in regulation, the senior guard’s shot gave the Eagles a slim 52-50 advantage that would only last briefly until
King’s free throws set the stage for Armour’s heroics.
Sutton complemented Armour’s outing by scoring eight points, while teammate Elijah Moleon had six points and three rebounds.
With the victory, Ellison advances to play Flower Mound (24-8) in the area round either Thursday, Friday or Saturday after the Jaguars defeated Abilene Wylie 71-64 in their postseason opener.
Although Armour finished strong for the Eagles, he had a slow start against Cedar Hill (13-16), scoring just four points in the first quarter.
Then, he found his rhythm.
Armour recorded eight of Ellison’s 14 points in the second quarter, and after halftime, he was responsible for eight of his team’s 16 third-quarter points before closing the contest with a seven-point fourth quarter.