STEPHENVILLE — With one starter sidelined with an injury and another not at 100 percent physically, the Glen Rose Tigers were still able to go on the road Tuesday and hold off Stephenville, 47-40, to clinch second place in District 7-4A in the final game of the regular-season game.
Two juniors, Caden Schinagel and Kanyon Keese, paced Tigers (18-18) in scoring with 12 and 10 points, respectively. The Tigers swept both matchups against Stephenville this season and completed district play with a 5-3 record, as the runners-up to 8-0 Brownwood. Stephenville finished in third place, at 4-4, and is 18-13 overall.
Coach Owen Clifton’s Tigers will be paired against Krum (5-3 in district, 20-14 overall), the third-place team out of District 8-4A, in the bi-district round of the playoffs.
That matchup is set for 5 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 24, at Aledo High School. Tickets are $5 for adults, $3 for students. Glen Rose fans will sit on the visitors side of the gym.
As the third playoff seed out of District 7-4A, Stephenville will play the 8-4A runner-up, Argyle (5-2, 20-4) in its first-round playoff game.
That 8-4A alignment features three of the top 10 Class 4A boys teams in the state according to the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches poll, with Decatur No. 7, Argyle 8th and Krum 10th. Those three teams, plus fourth-place Bridgeport 2-6, 20-12) all have won at least 20 games.
Stephenville pulled within one point of the Tigers, at 36-35, with 3:55 to go in the final quarter. The Tigers led by six points twice and even held an eight-point lead once in the final minute of the game before securing the seven-point win, despite an energized crowd in Stephenville’s Gandy Gym.
“It’s always a challenge when we play Stephenville,” Clifton said. “We weren’t really at 100 percent.”
The Tigers were playing without injured junior Kolton Mooney for the second game in a row. Another starter, Austin Worthen, played limited minutes against Stephenville as he recovers from a minor injury.
In addition to the top two scorers, Worthen scored eight points, while Kasen Keese added seven, Matthew Hammonds had six, Mason Daniels had two and Cody Morton and Lorenzo Greghi each made one free throw.
Glen Rose gave up just four points to the Yellow Jackets in the first quarter Tuesday, and led 20-14 at intermission. The Tigers had a 12-11 scoring edge in the third quarter, and both teams scored 15 in the final period.
“We made our free throws down the stretch, and defensively I thought we played really well,” Clifton said, noting he is hopeful that Mooney will be able to play Monday.
The winner of the Glen Rose-Krum first-round playoff game will advance to the area round in a matchup yet to be determined.