Martin’s Mill Holds Off LaPoynor + Advances To Saturday’s Class 2A State Title Game
SAN ANTONIO -- The Martin's MIll Lady Mustangs overcame an awful shooting performance, a turnover-filled morning, and furious fourth-quarter comeback attempt to reach the state championship game.
Martin's Mill withstood it all for a 36-33 win over former district rival LaPoynor in a Class 2A state semifinal in front of 3,517 fans Friday morning at the Alamodome.
The Lady Mustangs (30-7), who won it all at the end of the 2013 season, will play for another state title at 1:30 p.m. Saturday against Gruver, a 51-48 overtime winner over Weimar in the morning's other 2A semifinal.
Martin's Mill shot just 30.8 percent from the floor (12-for-39), committed 24 turnovers that led to 15 LaPoynor points, and allowed a 13-point fourth-quarter lead dwindle down to two with seven seconds remaining.
Haley Terry, who led LaPoynor (34-3) with 14 points, nailed her fourth 3-pointer of the game to bring the Lady Flyers to within 35-33, but Martin's Mill senior post Cheyenne Brown made one of two free throws on the ensuing possession.
The Lady Mustangs got an offensive rebound off Brown's miss from the stripe, which officially put an end to LaPoynor's comeback attempt that began with the Lady Flyers trailing 34-21 with just 2:56 to play.
Brown, a Northwestern State signee, led Martin's Mill with 15 points and 15 rebounds, going 5-of-6 from the free-throw line for the game. Her rebounding total helped Martin's Mill overcome its shooting woes and turnover tendencies with a 41-29 rebounding edge over LaPoynor.
The Lady Flyers had their own struggles from the field, finishing the game shooting 24 percent, including a 2-for-20 performance in the first half, which ended with Martin's Mill holding a 17-7 lead.
But with Martin's Mill in complete command late in the fourth, LaPoynor suddenly came alive.
Back-to-back 3-pointers from Terry cut LaPoynor's deficit to 34-27 with 2:16 remaining. Martin's MIll did its best to kill the clock, but a turnover gave the Lady Flyers new life with 1:20 to play.
LaPoynor missed two 3's on its next trip down the floor, but turned Martin's Mill over again. The Lady Flyers couldn't take advantage, and had to foul Martin's Mill, which made just one of two free throws.
Terry once again connected from deep, trimming Martin's Mill's lead to 35-30 with 16 seconds remaining. Another turnover by the Lady Mustangs gave the ball back LaPoynor, and Terry's fourth 3 of the quarter brought LaPoynor as close as it had been since the late stages of the first period.
Te'Aire Hambrick finished with 11 points and seven assists for LaPoynor, but turned it over eight times and was just 4-of-21 from the field.
No. 9 Martin's Mill 36, No. 4 LaPoynor 33
Girls Class 2A State Semifinal
At Alamodome, San Antonio
Martin's Mill 7 10 11 8 -- 36
LaPoynor 3 4 8 18 -- 33
MARTIN'S MILL (30-7) -- Cheyenne Brown, 15; Hailey Celsur, 8; Alyssa Pate, 5; Jocie Bennett, 3; Madi Daniel, 3; Briley Moon, 2.
LAPOYNOR (34-3) -- Haley Terry, 14; Te'Aire Hambrick, 11; Kivi Eldridge, 6; Kirstin Nance, 1; Jenny Warren, 1.
THREE-POINT GOALS -- Martin's Mill: Bennett, Hailey Celsur, Hannah Celsur, Pate. LaPoynor: Terry (4), Hambrick.