TEMPLE — After seeing a key game get away from them last Friday against Copperas Cove and finding themselves trailing at halftime to Belton, the Temple Tem-Cats found that a steady diet of Aniah Hall would right the ship.

It also allowed them to clinch a playoff spot.

Hall poured in 23 of her 25 points in the second half to lift Temple to a 50-35 victory over Belton at Wildcat Gym that boosted the Tem-Cats’ record to 13-7 overall and 8-3 in 12-6A play to lock down a postseason berth with three games to play.

Temple joined Harker Heights, Ellison and Shoemaker as fellow district members now jockeying for playoff seeding. Belton is 3-8 in district after a game effort Tuesday night.

“It was a good game all around for us,” Temple coach RaShonta LeBlanc said. “Coming off that loss to Copperas Cove, we came into this game with better energy and better execution. We had a real good rebounding night.”

Trailing 21-19 at halftime, Hall and the Tem-Cats dominated the second half. Hall, efficiently working in the low post, scored all 14 of Temple’s third-quarter points in a 14-1 surge that gave the Tem-Cats a 33-22 lead going into the final 8 minutes.

“We kept with what was working for us,” LeBlanc said. “They were giving (Hall) one-on-one situations and room to make her moves, so we kept getting it to her.”

The Lady Tigers’ offense re-awakened in the fourth quarter, but they were unable to cut into the Tem-Cats’ lead. Hall, who also pulled down 11 rebounds, added nine points in the final frame with scoring help from Taliyah Johnson, Nyteria Colbert and Ky’Jsha Thompson.

Hall had a quiet first half, but the Tem-Cats went on a 7-0 run to end the first quarter for a 9-4 lead, with Colbert and Tamera Copeland contributing buckets.

Belton exploded for a 17-point second quarter on four 3-pointers provided by four players — Karina Foster, Shelby Foster, Anna Beamesderfer and Lily Small — which propelled the Lady Tigers to a 17-10 advantage that dwindled to two points by halftime.

Beamesderfer finished with 11 points to pace the Lady Tigers. Johnson and Colbert had nine and eight points, respectively, for Temple.

Both teams will be on the road Friday. Temple travels to Bryan, and Belton visits Copperas Cove.

12-6A GIRLS BASKETBALL

y-Harker Heights 11-0

x-Ellison 8-3

x-Temple 8-3

Shoemaker 6-5

Belton 3-8

Bryan 3-8

Copperas Cove 3-8

Killeen 2-9

x-clinched playoff spot

y-clinched share of district title

TUESDAY'S GAMES

  • Ellison 42, Copperas Cove 26
  • No. 20 Harker Heights 59, Shoemaker 34
  • Killeen 56, Bryan 53
  • Temple 50, Belton 35

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