High School Sports

Top-ranked Grace Prep headed to TAPPS Class 4A Final Four for second-straight season

Grace Prep Hoops

Arlington Grace Prep defeated Colleyville Covenant in a rematch of last season’s TAPPS 4A state semifinal, 71-59, in the regional final on Saturday night at Sam Houston High School.

The Lions (33-2), ranked No. 1 in TAPPS 4A, will head to state for the second-straight season and third in five years.

“I thought Covenant played a great game. We’ve seen them a couple times and it was one of their better games so hats off to them,” Grace Prep coach Richie Alfred said. “We made a few mistakes, but kept battling and when we got into foul trouble, we had guys come off the bench and make some plays. We just have a locker room full of good kids and they stepped up when they needed to.

“I feel really good about it. Our JV and junior high teams had great seasons so we’re in a good position to be good for a few years and it’s always exciting to play deep into the season.”

Grace Prep, which beat Covenant 74-67 last year, led 19-14 after Evan McCarthy hit a jumper just inside 10 feet. The Lions went up 23-17 in the second quarter that forced the Cougars (24-13) to call a timeout.

McCarthy hit a 3-pointer and Grace Prep led 30-20 with 4:18 before the half.

Brandon Lawrence’s 3-point play pushed the lead to 13, but the Cougars scored the last six to cut it to 35-28 at intermission.

Covenant, ranked No. 6, extended its run to 8-0 early in the third, but the Lions answered with five-straight points. They would go on a 13-0 run and grab a 48-30 lead midway through the period. McCarthy drained two more 3-pointers in the fourth quarter.

The Lions will play Lubbock Trinity Christian (25-15) at 6 p.m. on Thursday at Waco Robinson HS.

High School Huddle Podcast Ep. 30

Paying tribute



Amarillo 47, Timberview 45

The Sandies again bested the Wolves in the postseason, this time winning the 5A Region I final at Western Texas College in Snyder. Amarillo beat Timberview in last year’s 5A state title game.

Timberview (38-2), ranked No. 1 in 5A, trailed 10-5 early, but Kennedy Wilson sparked a 7-0 run. The two teams were tied at 12 after the opening period. Amarillo (35-4) used a 6-0 run and its defense held the Wolves to four points in the second. The Sandies led 21-16 at the break.

Amarillo, ranked No. 2, had its largest lead, 34-26, late in the third and led by six going to the fourth quarter.

Mikayla Hutchinson pulled the Wolves within two with six minutes left, but the Sandies led 41-34 with four to play. N’Denasija Collins hit two free throws and her jumper with 1:55 left made it 43-40. Timberview trailed by 1 with 1:08 remaining.

Destiny Jackson scored a team-high 11 points while Timia Jefferson added 10.



Northwest 85, Burl. Centennial 63

Oklahoma State signee Avery Anderson scored a game-high 28, Julien Smith added 20 and the Texans eliminated the Spartans in a 5A Region I area round game at Martin HS.

Centennial (24-10) led 20-17 after the first quarter, but Northwest (29-7), which is ranked No. 6 in 5A, outscored the Spartans 48-25 in the second and third quarters.

Sammie Freeman and Kevin Cash added 19 and 14 points.

The Spartans were led by Zachary Bolf’s 20 points. Anthony Hunter chipped in 19.

Brewer 53, Crowley 35

For the first time since 1990, the Bears are headed to the regional quarterfinals after knocking off the Eagles in a 5A Region I area round game at Aledo HS.

The Bears (29-4), ranked No. 13 in 5A, will play Northwest, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Coppell.

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Born and raised in Hawaii, Brian Gosset graduated from Northern Arizona University with a degree in journalism before coming to Texas in 2014. He’s covered high school sports — yes, pretty much every high school sport — for the Star-Telegram ever since.