Eagle eye

Kaylee Howell sets up for an easy two-point jumper.

The Rockport-Fulton High School (RFHS) Lady Pirate basketball team lost to the Beeville Lady Trojans 55-54 in the closing seconds of what looked to be a close win for the Lady Pirates instead Friday, Jan. 7 at home.

The Lady Pirates hold a 3-1 district record with a 20-7 overall record.

The game was a showdown between two of the best teams in the Coastal Bend. Currently, Beeville is ranked the #13 team in 4A by the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches. RFHS is ranked #17, despite the loss.

Halfway through the fourth quarter, Beeville appeared to be pulling away until a late rally by RFHS put the game close again with less than two minutes left.

RFHS trailed the entire fourth quarter until Mikayla Molina hit a 3-point shot with 15 seconds left in the game to put the Lady Pirates up 54-53. Beeville was called for traveling in the ensuing possession and it appeared as though RFHS would complete the comeback victory.

However, on the ensuing throw-in, RFHS turned the ball over out of bounds and gave Beeville another opportunity on their side of the court with six seconds on the clock.

Beeville capitalized and hit a game-winning basket on a layup with two seconds remaining. It was a devastating turn of events for RFHS in the final seconds.

“It was a tense situation,” said RFHS Head Coach Morgan Hale. “We talked about that after the game and we really hadn’t been in that kind of situation this year. We made some bad decisions under pressure and we’re going to have to learn from it.”

Despite being down by as many as 10 points in the game, Hale said she loved the way the team continued to respond to adverse situations.

“We weathered their storms well, we know they shoot the ball well. We just have to make some in-game adjustments,” said Hale. “As a coach I have to go back to the drawing board, make some adjustments for myself and make sure I do my part to be better in those situations.”

Beeville’s victory puts them in the driver’s seat of District 26-4A with a 5-0 district record. Both teams will play again at Beeville Tuesday, Feb. 1.

Howell led RFHS in scoring with 28 points.

RFHS played Ingleside Tuesday, Jan. 11. Their next game is 6:15 p.m. Friday, Jan. 14 at home against Sinton.

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