Lady Riders advance in playoffs for second consecutive year; fall to Fairfield in first round

Lady Riders keep game close in early stages

RUSK — The Lady Roughriders of Center had their season come to an end Monday night, dropping a 4A Region III Bi-District Playoff contest to the Lady Eagles of Fairfield, 73-34.

Despite facing a juggernaut in 28-4 Fairfield, the Lady Roughriders looked up to the challenge in the first quarter, staying physical with the Lady Eagles while officials allowed a trench war in the early goings.

The duo of Ja’kayla Parks and Alex Patton kept the team alive in the first, including a three by Patton to get within striking distance at 10-6.

The Lady Eagles’ bench unit sparked a late run in the first quarter, with the Lady Roughriders down 17-6 after a frame. In the second quarter, Center’s ability to possess the ball was stifled amidst heavy Lady Eagle pressure. Forced and unforced turnovers alike led to a 22-7 disadvantage in the second period. The Lady Roughriders were down 39-13 at the halftime break.

Showing life in the third quarter, the team kept up with the Division 19 Champions, thanks in large part to Parks’ ability to draw fouls. An 11-point effort for the junior on the night was still not enough, as the team found themselves down 30 at the end of three, 53-23.

The squad took more outside shots in the fourth quarter, banking a few of them, including a three-pointer from junior guard Mackenzie Mireles. The 11-point quarter was the teams best in the game, but was too few to make up the deficit.

A 34-point night on the whole was the weakest offensive performance for the Lady Roughriders in nearly a month, since putting up 20 in a loss to Huntington on Jan. 31.

The Lady Roughriders captured four district victories on the season, collecting wins over Huntington, Jasper, and two against Hudson.

Losing in the Bi-Districts for the second consecutive season, the program still remains on the upswing, making the playoff field two years in a row after missing out in recent years.

Fairfield will now go onto face the victor of Robinson and Hillsboro in the Area round.


The Light and Champion

137 San Augustine St.
Center TX 75935