TYLER --  Behind the hot shooting of Michelle Obach, the No. 3 Tyler T.K. Gorman beat the Lindale 66-46 in the semifinals of the Macy Chevenert Patriot Holiday Tournament at UT Tyler on Friday.

Gorman (17-2), ranked third in the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches large private school poll, faces Class 3A No. 12 Liberty-Eylau in Saturday's 2:30 p.m. championship at the Herrington-Patriot Center.

Obach scored a game-high 25 points, four steals, and three assists. Susannah Williams added 15 points and six rebounds. Brooke Lee and Danielle Smith each had 12 points, with Smith pulling down six boards and Lee adding four steals.

Lindale's Natasha Malone had a team-high 13 points and 12 rebounds, while Zhanelle Geathers chipped in seven points, six boards, and two blocks.

"We knew coming in (Lindale) would be a tough matchup for us," said T.K. Gorman coach Katie Robertson. "In our two losses, we've had horrible starts. We knew we had to come out on them immediately. We want to come out and be the first team to score. I think that sets the pace and mentality for the rest of the game. Against a team like Lindale (with big post players), essentially we have to play the best post defense on the perimeter by pressuring their guards so that they can't enter the ball."

Gorman started strong, going on a 7-2 run in the first quarter. Smith sank a three-pointer, then Williams got a layup from a great assist by Lee. Obach got a steal and was fouled going to the rack for a three-point play with 2:09 left in the first, and Gorman led 17-8.

After Lindale's (15-4) Hanna Malone started the second with a steal and jumper, Gorman's Allie Buzbee got a steal and hit Obach in transition for the three-point play as the Lady Crusaders built a double-digit lead. Lee drained a long-range trey, then went strong to the hoop and scored right before intermission as Gorman took a 34-19 advantage to halftime.

After Obach opened the second half with a bank shot, Lindale made a run.

Neely Ross hit a three-pointer off a Hanna Malone assist, then Paige Murphy sank a hard bucket in the lane, and Lindale was within 10, 36-26. Natasha Malone added two offensive rebounds and a layup on their next trip down the floor, but Obach's jumper kept the Lady Eagles at bay. Hanna Malone added four steals to go with four points and four rebounds.

But each time the Lady Eagles got close, Obach turned it on. She went hard to the hoop to draw the foul and-1, and after swishing the free throw, Gorman held a 42-30 margin at the 4:09 mark.

Lindale started the fourth on an 8-1 run with Geathers hitting a post move to bring the Lady Eagles back within 10, 49-39. But a Smith jump shot and Obach steal and layup pushed it back to 53-39 before Lindale could blink.

Lindale opens District 16-4A play at home Friday against John Tyler.


Other results from Friday's action at the Macy Chenevert Patriot Holiday Tournament ...

  • Willis Point 50, Kilgore 41
  • John Tyler 60, Pine Tree 48
  • Hallsville 50, Willis Point 46
  • Henderson 49, Tyler Grace 47
  • Lindale 72, Pleasant Grove 63
  • Liberty-Eylau 60, John Tyler 53