By Alex Byington and Kevin Posival
Killeen Daily Herald
Julie Mize was nervous before the game.
Afterward, the 5-foot-5 junior sparkplug was all smiles after powering the Lady Badgers with 21 points in a must-win victory over the visiting Lady Eagles 55-23 on Tuesday.
"I was really, really nervous, because I knew we had to win this game if we were going to go to the playoffs," Mize said. "I was (so) nervous, I didn't know what to do, I (thought I was) about to throw up or cry."
But rather than do either of those, the giddy Mize worked out her nerves on the court, nailing a mid-range jumper 1:52 into the game and then scored the final six points of an 11-3 run to end the first quarter with a 13-4 lead. The Lady Badgers kept coming, leading 26-11 at halftime, and then pulled away by 25, 43-18, on the heels of a rare four-point play from Mize with 1:50 left in the third quarter.
With four games left, Lampasas (11-15, 3-3) moves into a tie for third place in 25-3A with Salado (12-12, 3-3) - which has lost three straight.
"I don't think Salado expected us to come out blazing - I told the girls 'Guns blazing tonight,'" Lampasas coach Jenny Bowden said.
Lady Eagles 6-foot post Carling Urben, who dropped 21 on Lampasas in the first round of district, was held to just three points while playing with a sore ankle she twisted midway through the opening quarter.
"It made it a little difficult, but no excuses," Salado coach Jeanette McKinney said. "We got outplayed, we got beat and we are extremely disappointed in how we played tonight."
Shoemaker 32, Belton 27 - At Belton, it was not a good game for the Lady Grey Wolves. They didn't shoot well, didn't start well and their leading scoring, Kiara Rawls, only had seven points.
Shoemaker still found a way to win, despite struggling in the first quarter.
China Spring 61, Gatesville 56, OT - At China Spring, Deja Ward scored 25 points for the Hornets, including hitting a late 3-pointers to send the game to overtime.
However, Gatesville (13-12, 2-4) had too many turnovers in the overtime period and fell to the Lady Cougars.
Killeen 65, San Angelo Lake View 63 - At San Angelo, Jasmine Goodwine scored 28 points and the Lady Roos rallied and then held off to beat the Maidens on the road.
Esha Atkins scored 19 for Killeen (15-12, 4-2 8-4A) which trailed 17-8 early, but outscored Lake View 22-13 in the second quarter to take a 34-30 lead at halftime. Lake View hit four 3-pointers in the final three minutes, but the Lady Roos held on for the win.
Killeen 91, San Angelo Lake View 34 - At Killeen, Brian Long led a balanced scoring attack with 15 points and the Roos crushed the Chiefs to even their District 8-4A record at 2-2.
The Roos (13-14) led 20-12 after one quarter, then put the game away by outscoring Lake View 54-17 over the next 16 minutes. Demarius Cress hit three of Killeen's six 3-pointers and finished with 14 points.
Shoemaker 66, Belton 42 - At Shoemaker, Jose Roman scored 18 points and Chris Runnels added 16 as the Grey Wolves blew out visiting Belton.
Shoemaker (17-9, 5-3 12-5A) jumped ahead 26-14 early in the first half and never let up on the Tigers (5-20, 1-7).
Ellison 59, Copperas Cove 52 - At Copperas Cove, Ojai Black scored 21 points thanks to five 3-pointers and a 9-of-12 effort from the free-throw line and Devron Hattix had a pair of key rebounds as the Eagles held off the Bulldawgs.
Ellison (16-11, 5-3 12-5A) outscored Copperas Cove (14-11, 3-5) 20-11 in the second quarter to take and 11-point lead at the half. They then held off the Bulldawgs' surge led by Cory Scott, who had 16 points.
Harker Heights 64, Temple 46 - At Harker Heights, Cameron Delaney and Trumell McCrimmon each had double-doubles and the Knights won their ninth straight game.
Delaney scored 13 points to go along with 12 rebounds and McCrimmon had 11 points and 11 rebounds. Thomas Cherry scored a game-high 16 to lead Harker Heights (21-6, 7-1 12-5A).
C.J. Rodriguez scored 14 as the Knights rallied from a six-point deficit in the first quarter by outscoring the Wildcats 34-17 in the second half.
Lometa 60, Lohn 45 - At Lometa, Dylan Straley went off for the Hornets, scoring 25 points and leading them past the Eagles in a battle for first place in District 28-1A Division II. Shane Stone added a double-double for Lometa (13-7, 6-1) scoring 12 and pulling down 11 rebounds.
Killeen 1, Shoemaker 0 - At Killeen, Nathali Perez scored 53 seconds into the second half off an assist from Alejandra Machias as the Lady Roos (4-4-1) held off Shoemaker.
Goalkeeper Nia Duran had six saves for Killeen and Christine Paige led the Lady Roos' defensive charge.