The Rockport-Fulton High School (RFHS) Lady Pirate basketball team closed out the Orange Grove Lady Bulldogs in the final four minutes of play to win 33-27 Friday, Jan. 10 at home.
The victory keeps RFHS in the thick of the hunt in District 31-4A. Their 3-2 district record is tied with Robstown and Sinton for third place. RFHS’ overall record is 13-11.
RFHS narrowly trailed OG to end the first quarter but climbed back with sound defense and a big second and fourth quarter offensively to stay ahead of the Lady Bulldogs.
“They (OG) came out in a triangle, which we had not seen before (on film) and they tried to deny Kaylee and Jordan the ball,” said RFHS Head Girls Basketball Coach Mark Malone. “We made some adjustments and I kept telling our girls we got to step up and we had enough of them step up in order to win the game.”
In the first quarter, the game was tight with the score at 4-4 halfway through the quarter after a bucket by Mikayla Molina to tie it. With just over a minute remaining, Jordan Malone hit a 3-pointer to give RFHS seven. In the following possession, Malone fired from long range again but was fouled with no basket. She went 2-3 in free throws to end the quarter with RFHS trailing 10-9.
In the second, RFHS opened the quarter with good defense, forcing numerous missed shots by OG. The RFHS offense was also clicking, with feeds by Lilith Solis to Alyssa Garcia and Molina assisting to a basket by Audra Jones. Solis finished the half strong with two baskets to give RFHS a 19-12 lead.
In the third, OG gained some ground on RFHS with a late rally in the end of the quarter to make it a four-point game. Malone was able to keep RFHS ahead knocking down a 3-point FG and finishing on a drive to the net. Malone’s five points helped gave RFHS a 25-21 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
In the fourth, RFHS struggled to score for a short time while OG decreased the deficit to three at 30-27 with four minutes left. However, the Lady Pirate defense played tough in the final stretch as OG could not make another basket for the remainder of the game while RFHS increased its lead on an and-1 by Kaylee Howell to close it out 33-27.
RFHS played Sinton Tuesday, Jan. 14. They play again at 6:15 p.m. Friday, Jan. 17 at Beeville.