Runnin’ Tigers edge Iowa Park, await Decatur on Wednesday

Jay Hinton
Glen Rose Reporter
Glen Rose's Matthew Hammonds drives to the hoop for two of his 22 points in the Tigers' 54-50 playoff win over Iowa Park on Saturday night at Mineral Wells High School.
Glen Rose's Cross Arrington scored 18 points in the win over Iowa Park.

MINERAL WELLS — Matthew Hammonds scored 22 points and Cross Arrington added 18 more as the Glen Rose Runnin’ Tigers held off Iowa Park 54-50 on Saturday night at Mineral Wells High School to advance to the second round of the Class 4A Playoffs.

With the win, the Tigers (25-2) will face District 7-4A second-place Decatur (22-6) on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Aledo High School.

After a foul shot by Arrington with 20.7 seconds left the Tigers led by five. On its next possession, Iowa Park was fouled on a made 3-pointer and went to the line with the chance to cut the lead to one with 8.65 seconds left. Iowa Park missed the foul shot and got the rebound and missed a point-blank shot under the basket, and after another rebound, missed a 3-pointer that would have won the game.

The Tigers were fouled on the rebound, and Hammonds went to the line and hit two foul shots with 4.7 seconds left to put the game on ice.

The game was tied at 10-10 at the end of the first quarter, but the Tigers held the Hawks scoreless for the first five minutes of the second quarter while building a 21-10 lead after a pair of foul shots by Mooney with 3:33 left in the half.

Glen Rose led 23-16 at the half but managed just two points in the first 3:16 of the third quarter, and that allowed Iowa Park to tie the game at 25-25 at the 4:44 mark of the quarter.

Kanyon Keese scored his four points in the game on back-to-back possession to increase the Tiger lead to 29-25.

Iowa Park fought back and took the lead the final time in the game on a 3-pointer with 2:02 left in the third to lead 31-29. The lead was short-lived as Hammonds drained consecutive triples to give the Tigers the lead for good at 35-31 with 1:32 left in the quarter.

Glen Rose led 42-35 heading into the final quarter and Iowa Park got within two at the 6:10 mark, and that was as close as the Hawks would get until cutting the lead to two with less than 10 seconds left.

Behind Hammonds and Arrington, Mooney added five points, Keese had four and Austin Worthen added three points.

The No. 18 Tigers, the District 6-4A champs, will enter Wednesday’s game with No. 10 Decatur on a 10-game winning streak.