The magic continues in Justin Northwest’s season.
Despite falling behind by double digits in the first half, the Texans rallied to beat El Paso Burges 65-62 in the Class 5A Region I final on Saturday at Western Texas College.
Northwest (32-5) advances to the 5A state tournament in San Antonio, with games taking place at the Alamodome at 7 and 8:30 p.m. Thursday.
“It means a lot. The excitement was crazy,” senior guard Tucker Dunn said. “To be one of the final four teams, and to be one of those players on those teams is insane.”
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Burges, down seven in the fourth, came back to tie it at 57-57 and 59-59 with 51 seconds left after two jumpers from junior Jawaun Newton, who had a game-high 28 points.
It’s unbelievable for this school. “I don’t think anyone from here ever thought we’d make the final four.
Northwest coach Mike Hatch
Sophomore Avery Anderson made two free throws to give the Texans a 61-59 advantage with 38.9 left, and senior Jay Am’Mons added two more to put them up five.
Newton had a 3-point play to make it 63-62 with 10 seconds left. Dunn made two free throws before Burges missed a tying 3-pointer and the Texans were able to run out the clock.
“It’s unbelievable for this school,” Texans coach Mike Hatch said. “I don’t think anyone from here ever thought we’d make the final four.”
Anderson was named all-region tournament MVP with 22 points. He made 12 of 13 from the free-throw line. Dunn also made the all-tourney team with 12 points and three assists.
“I had no idea,” Dunn said on getting the honor. “I’m glad and grateful I did.”
The Mustangs (28-5) led 35-26 at halftime after trailing 12-9 following the first quarter.
We just said we had to keep grinding. Came out in the second half pressuring them, and we just kept getting easy points.
Northwest guard Tucker Dunn
Burges’ brothers Jawaun and Tristen Newton keyed in on a 12-0 run to get the Mustangs ahead 26-16 after a steal and fast-break dunk by Christian Matamoros.
Jawaun Newton’s jumper and Tristen Newton’s six points turned a 16-14 deficit to a 24-16 lead. The brothers scored 29 points apiece in Friday’s win over Fort Worth Eastern Hills.
“We’re not afraid by it,” said Hatch about falling behind. “We’re not intimidated by it, we didn’t panic. We have some guys that are very confident and they felt like we could stop them.”
“We just said we had to keep grinding,” Dunn added. “Came out in the second half pressuring them, and we just kept getting easy points.”