ARLINGTON — Taking on one of the girls basketball teams out of District 8-4A can be a difficult chore — even against the fourth-place team.
But Glen Rose coach Ramsey Ghazal and his sixth-ranked Lady Tigers were ready for the challenge Tuesday evening at College Park Center on the campus of UT-Arlington when they defeated Krum in the bi-district round of the playoffs, 46-42.
The victory propelled the 28-6 Lady Tigers into the area round of the playoffs. They will play Wichita Falls Hirschi at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20, in the Mineral Wells High School gym. Tickets will be $5 for adults, $3 for students. Glen Rose fans will sit on the home side.
Krum’s season ended with a 15-13 record overall, and 3-5 in District 8. But the Lady Bobats proved to be a dangerous foe, having defeated District 8 champion Argyle — the No. 5-ranked team in the state — by a 47-43 margin on Feb. 7. And in their first district meeting against Argyle, the Lady Bobcats lost by only one point, 53-52, in overtime.
“They are the best four seed in the state of Texas, without a doubt,” Ghazal said of Krum. “We knew that coming in. We had no illusions it was going to be easy.”
Jeana Douglas scored nine of her team-leading 15 points in the opening quarter Monday, before Bree Baker and Hailey Ibarra combined to sink seven free throws in the fourth quarter to hold off the Lady Bobcats in a game that was close all the way. Baker and Ibarra scored 11 and 10 points, respectively, and Hazel Hawkins scored eight.
“They made some shots, and I thought we answered, and hit some free throws down the stretch,” said Ghazal, who recently posted the 500th win of his coaching career.
Glen Rose led 13-11 at the end of the first quarter and 22-18 at halftime. Glen Rose, which got two 3-point baskets from Hawkins in the third, led 33-31 going into the final quarter. Krum trailed by six points (39-33) with 2:51 remaining in the game before pulling within one point, 43-42, with a field goal inside with 34 seconds left in the game. But Baker hit one of two free throws nine seconds later, then closed out the win with a pair from the free throw line with just 3.1 seconds left.
“We just knew our defense needed to tighten up on their offensive players,” Ibarra said. “We know we can have games like that and still pull it off.”
When asked if winning such a competitive game in the opening round of the playoffs could boost the team[s confidence, Baker said, “I think any win boosts our confidence. They beat Argyle. Beating them was a big accomplishment.”
Ghazal noted that the Lady Tigers’ non-district schedule had already toughened them in preparation for the playoff challenges.
“We had a tough schedule, and we’ve been in a lot of close games. That (a close win) is better than winning a blowout at this stage,” the coach said.
Hirschi’s Lady Huskies are 9-11 overall after defeating Big Spring in bi-district. They took second place behind Graham in the final District 6-4A standings with a 6-2 mark. The winner of the Glen Rose-Hirschi contest will play either Argyle or Snyder in the third round of the playoffs.