Keller Fossil Ridge clamped down on Southlake Carroll in a strange fourth quarter to capture a 51-43 home victory in District 4-5A on Friday.
What started as a defensive struggle ended in a strange twist in the fourth quarter. Carroll did not make a field goal in the final eight minutes but scored 13 points on 11 trips to the free-throw line.
For Carroll, the real frustration was missing seven of those free throws.
The Dragons (16-13, 5-6 in 4-5A) had a chance to take sole possession of fourth place in district and control their playoff fate. The win tied Fossil Ridge (11-13, 5-6) with Carroll as the playoff race goes to the wire.
The teams traded punches in the first half. The biggest lead for either was four points.
It came down to a crucial offensive stretch in the third quarter with Fossil Ridge clinging to a 34-32 lead with about seven minutes to play.
The Panthers' Ryan Parker drained a 3-pointer, and teammate Cameron Montgomery added one on the next possession to stretch the lead to 40-32.
Post Bryce Jackson went inside on the next trip down and was fouled by Carroll's Spencer Tiejten. Jackson made one of two free throws for 41-32.
Montgomery (12 points) made it 43-32, but Carroll chipped the lead to 45-43 in the last minute. Chris Kouakou had four of his 12 points late at the foul line.
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