Shooting guard Dawson Gates is usually among the cast of consistent characters for the Aledo basketball team.With a playoff berth on the line Wednesday night and having just regained his starting spot, Gates stole the show with 17 points in a 55-46 District 7-4A victory against Fort Worth South Hills at South Hills’ gymnasium. The victory clinches the fourth and final playoff spot in District 7-4A for Aledo (13-15, 7-7 7-4A) and sends the Bearcats into a bi-district matchup with Everman next week. “I can’t say enough about how important his play was tonight,” Aledo coach Steve Smith said of Gates. “With the different matchups we faced in district, I decided to have him come off the bench for a lot of it. But I felt like going with smaller lineup was best tonight, and he proved me right.”Gates made three consecutive 3-pointers to open the second half, which allowed Aledo to grab an 11-point lead early in the third quarter. That margin proved too much to overcome for South Hills (15-12, 6-8), which needed a win to take the final spot from Aledo. Gates’ touch during that stretch was key as the Scorpions got consecutive 3-pointers of their own to open the third quarter as well.Aledo point guard Luke Bishop said team defense after that was paramount.“You’ve got to give them credit, they’re backs were against the wall like ours were and they made some plays,” Bishop said. “For us, I think we’re playing some good basketball, and if we can keep doing this, we might can make a run here.”Kyle Hickey led South Hills with 15 points and brother Andrew Hickey had nine.Aledo’s Carl Williams had 11 points and Bishop finished with 10.