The Cooldown- 2021 Week Twenty-Eight
San Antonio here we come! It’s finally Championship Week in Texas! In a normal year, the Final Four would be played at the Alamodome but only the State Championship Games will be played in San Antonio this year. That means the State Semifinals will be played at neutral sites. Welcome to our Final Four preview!
Region I Champions: Richardson Eagles
Richardson defeated Jesuit 66-43 in the Region I Championship Game behind a game-high 22 points from Rylan Griffen. The Eagles opened up an eight-point lead at halftime and didn’t look back. Derek Burns finished with 12 points and Gannon Parked scored 11 points to give Richardson three players in double-figures. Cason Wallace and Dequinton Williams each added eight points. Jesuit trailed by one point after the first quarter and kept the game within single digits at halftime before falling behind in the second half. Connor Moore led the Rangers with 15 points and Gavin Perryman added 13 points.
Region II Champions: Duncanville Panthers
Duncanville rode an early lead to a 70-65 victory over the Waxahachie Indians. Waxahachie battled back from big deficits twice in the Region II Championship Game, but ultimately fell short. Damon Nicholas paced Duncanville with 20 points while Juan Reyna added 15 points and Zhuric Phelps and Ron Holland added 10 points apiece. Duncanville used a 24-12 advantage in the 2nd quarter to build up its first big lead of the night. The Panthers led again in the 4th quarter 59-46 but the Indians wouldn’t have enough time to erase the deficit. C.J. Noland finished with 30 points to lead the Indians and V’zarion Roberson added 13 points. Montez Young finished with nine points.
Duncanville vs Richardson
Duncanville and Richardson will meet at SMU on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. to decide who will make the trip down to San Antonio for the 6A State Championship Game. Slowing down Cason Wallace and Rylan Griffen will be no easy task for Duncanville. The Panthers will rely on their depth to power them to the State Championship Game. The Eagles will need both Wallace and Griffen to play their best, and get others involved in order to keep up with Duncanville. Nicholas, Holland, Phelps and Reyna make up a four-headed monster that has led Duncanville to a 27-1 record. Richardson is sitting at 26-1, and both teams deserve to make the trip to San Antonio. Unfortunately, there can only be one.
Region II Champions: Kimball Knights
Kimball defeated top ranked Lancaster 77-75 in overtime to advance to the Final Four. The Knights erased an 18-point deficit heading to the 4th quarter to force overtime by outscoring Lancaster 29-11 in the final frame. Kyron Henderson led Kimball with 26 points and Arterio Morris 16 points for the Knights. Jayden Blair finished with 12 points and Chauncey Gibson scored 11 points. Lancaster was led by Wade Taylor IV in scoring with 19 points. Jarod Johnson finished with 16 points and Jalen Williams finished with 14 points for the Tigers. Kimball continues its tear through the playoffs, having now defeated No. 1 Lancaster, No. 11 Highland Park, No. 12 South Oak Cliff and No. 18 Frisco Wakeland. Next up: No. 6 Amarillo.
Kimball vs Amarillo
Kimball knocked off the top ranked team in 5A last weekend and will get to face No. 6 Amarillo for the chance to play in the State Championship Game. No. 2 Beaumont United and No. 23 Glenn remain on the other side of the bracket. Amarillo defeated No. 4 Mansfield Timberview 55-34 to advance to the Final Four. Kimball will need big games from Arterio Morris and Kyron Henderson in order to beat Amarillo and advance to San Antonio. Kimball and Amarillo will meet Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. at Angelo State.
Faith Family vs Argyle
No. 1 Faith Family will meet No. 3 Argyle on Tuesday night at 7:30 at the Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center to decide which DFW team will move on to San Antonio. Faith Family beat Carter 60-53 to advance to the Final Four. Dallas Hobbs dropped 20 points for Faith Family and TJ Caldwell added 15 points. Argyle defeated Seminole 52-36 to advance to the Final Four. The winner of Faith Family’s showdown with Argyle will face the winner of No. 5 Boerne and No. 11 Huffman.
Women’s Semifinal Games
DeSoto defeats South Grand Prairie
The DeSoto women downed South Grand Prairie 63-52 to advance to the State Championship Game. Kendall Brown finished with a game-high 17 points while Amina Muhammad added 12 points and Tionna Herron and Ayanna Smith each added 10 points. DeSoto will face Cypress Creek at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday night in the Alamodome for the State Championship!
Frisco Liberty eliminates Lubbock Cooper
Frisco Liberty advanced to the State Championship Game with a 39-37 win over Lubbock Cooper. Lily Ziemkiewicz led the way with 15 points and Jazzy Owens-Barnett added 10 points. Frisco Liberty will face Cedar Park at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday night in the Alamodome for the State Championship!
Player of the Week
My player of the week is Kimball’s Kyron Henderson! Kimball erased a big deficit to force overtime against Lancaster and came away with a big win to advance to the Final Four. Henderson was a big part of Kimball’s efforts, finishing with 26 points! Simply put, Henderson had the most important performance of any player in the area with a trip to the Final Four on the line, and that is why he is my player of the week!
Team of the Week
My team of the week is the Duncanville Panthers! Duncanville came into its playoff game against Waxahachie with a 26-1 record. The lone loss was an overtime thriller in the regular season when Waxahachie beat Duncanville 88-85. Duncanville avenged its only loss of the season with a statement win over the Indians to advance to the Final Four, making the Panthers my team of the week!