The Rockport-Fulton High School (RFHS) Lady Pirate basketball team (#22) defeated the La Marque Lady Cougars 64-45 Thursday, Feb. 11 in Tidehaven.
RFHS improves its overall record to 22-4. It is their first bi-district victory since 2014.
Every member of the Lady Pirates roster played their first playoff basketball game against La Marque. For RFHS Head Girls Basketball Coach Morgan Hale, it was her first postseason game as head coach. Hale said there were definitely some first time jitters, but for the most part the team responded well.
“You could tell in certain moments, but kudos to La Marque, their super physical,” said Hale. “We’re not used to playing that kind of game so it kind of threw us off. We had to figure out how to counter that.
“I tell the girls all the time, ‘overcoming adversity is what defines us,’ and that’s what they did. They fought through and figured out a way to win tonight.”
While RFHS held a lead through most of the game, La Marque played RFHS tough throughout.
In the first quarter, La Marque fought through the tough defense of RFHS and kept within six points. However, RFHS was explosive out of the gate hitting two 3-point field goals (FG) by Messiah Hernandez and Jordan Malone. Kaylee Howell added six points, going 4-4 from the line.
In the second quarter, RFHS played stout defensively and allowed only six points. Mikayla Molina and Malone incited numerous turnovers by La Marque. The Lady Pirates remained consistent on offense, with Molina, Howell, and Lilith Solis scoring four points each. Malone also sank another 3-point FG, giving RFHS a 31-16 lead at the half.
In the third quarter, La Marque came roaring back with 19 points and had come within 10 points of RFHS late in the third quarter. However, RFHS managed to keep their distance with big plays from Kaylee Howell inside and another 3-point FG from Hernandez.
Howell continued her push offensively into the fourth quarter, adding in another 11 points on drives to the basket.
Howell led RFHS in scoring with 32 points.
Malone and Solis followed with 10 points each.
As of press deadline, Monday, Feb. 15, RFHS’ area round game with Cuero was delayed to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 17 in Woodsboro.