By Kevin Posival, Alex Byington and Angel Verdejo
Killeen Daily Herald
Officials from the Waco chapter of the Texas Association of Sports Officials will call Friday night's game between eighth-ranked Killeen High and fifth-ranked Lake Travis at Killeen in a District 25-4A bout of undefeated teams.
Lake Travis coach Jan Jernberg refused to use the Temple chapter for Friday night's game so Killeen coach Jason Fossett had the UIL intervene.
"I would've been happy to use Temple here and Austin down there, but their coach wouldn't use Temple under any circumstances, so when they wouldn't use Temple, I was obviously going to scratch Austin when we went down there," Fossett said.
The two teams met three times last season, splitting their 25-4A games and Killeen falling to Lake Travis 74-59 in a regional quarterfinal playoff game.
The Austin chapter whistled Killeen 19 fouls in the first meeting – a 71-58 loss at Lake Travis – and Lake Travis only 12. In Killeen, using the Temple chapter, the Roos had 13 fouls called against them while the Cavaliers were whistled for 23 in Killeen's 46-34 win. A UIL-assigned crew from the Houston area called Killeen for 18 fouls and Lake Travis 15 in the playoff game.
"We're not going to use Austin when we go down there since they're not going to use Temple when they come here," Fossett said. "It'll be a UIL-assigned crew for the one here and it'll be a UIL-assigned crew when we go to Lake Travis."
Injury finally helps Salado girls
Decimated by injuries all season, the Salado Lady Eagles finally had something positive happen after a bad scare early in Tuesday's game against Lexington.
Already without starting juniors Brennan Boydstun and Jenna Sebek, who are out with ACL tears, and sophomore post Carling Urben, who injured her ankle last week, Salado has more than half of its pre-season starting five relegated to the bench. Also injured is Lorna Payne, who hurt her knee this past summer and has yet to hit the court for either volleyball or basketball, two sports she had competed in a year ago.
"We've just been injury-prone, I don't know what it is," said Salado coach Jeanette McKinney. "It's kind of scary."
It looked like the Lady Eagles were in for more bad news when junior wing Hadley Joiner, the two-time defending District 25-2A MVP, went down in the first quarter Tuesday with what was later determined to be a concussion after a Lexington player elbowed her in the head.
"It rung her bell good," McKinney said. "She's still struggling with it today (Wednesday)."
But upon returning late in the second quarter, Joiner found her shot, drilling the first of her four 3-pointers before finishing with a game-high 22 points after scoring just four prior to going down.
Despite Joiner's improved production in the 49-42 road victory, which puts Salado into a two-way tie atop District 25-2A, McKinney is hoping the team is through with the injury-bug.
"We're talking about sprinkling the court with holy water, or whatever it takes," McKinney said. "A rabbit's foot, I don't know, I'm willing to try anything right about now."
Sweep is 'double' win over Lady Eagles
Ellison's 68-60 road win over the Copperas Cove Lady Bulldawgs on Tuesday was actually two wins in one.
For one, the Lady Eagles (23-6, 7-3 District 12-5A) broke a third-place tie with Cove, giving Ellison sole possession of third and putting the Lady Dawgs (18-11, 6-4) into fourth, though two games ahead of both Harker Heights (4-6) and A&M Consolidated (4-6).
"It picks us up and puts us in a good situation," Ellison coach Sherry McKinnon said. "That was an important win."
But also of equal mention is Ellison taking the season series against Cove, which could come into play later in the year. The Lady Eagles won both meetings, giving them the tiebreaker over the Lady Dawgs.
"The fact that they beat us twice becomes a factor," Cove coach Richard Herbst said. "If we can tie them up, that still leads to their favor, so that's the big thing."
By the numbers
478 – The number of miles Shoemaker is driving this week to road games at Bryan and A&M Consolidated. The Grey Wolves nearly pulled the upset against District 12-5A's top-seeded Vikings, losing 64-60 Tuesday, and head to College Station to face A&M Consolidated on Friday.
4 – The number of teams tied for first place atop the District 25-4A girls standings. Killeen was alone in first place going into Tuesday's game, but the Lady Roos lost to Pflugerville Hendrickson, coupled with Hutto and Marble Falls victories to put all four at 4-2 in district play.
Games to watch
Bryan boys at Ellison (7:30 p.m. Friday): The Eagles are on a three-game win streak and playing arguably their best basketball of the season. Now is a good time to beat Bryan, as the Vikings are in first place but have won their last two games over Harker Heights and Shoemaker by only a combined six points.
Copperas Cove girls at Temple (7 p.m. Friday): The Lady Dawgs fell into fourth place with Tuesday's loss to Ellison, but are two games ahead of both Harker Heights and A&M Consolidated. Temple is tied for the district lead and another Cove loss gives both the Lady Knights and Lady Tigers life with a few games to play.