Third Quarter Dooms Longview in First-Round Playoff Loss to Rowlett
LINDALE -- Rowlett used a 24-point third quarter to break open a tight game and defeat Longview 65-45 in Monday's Class 5A Region II bi-district playoff at Lindale High School.
Rowlett (23-8) led 28-23 going into halftime, but outscored Longview 24-5 in a decisive third period.
"I think it's been over a decade since Rowlett has made the playoffs, so I'm very pleased," said Rowlett coach Richard Roland. "Longview has a history of being a very good girls program, so the first win was big. Obviously the second round is going to be tougher, but I think we're capable of playing with anybody."
Leading by five points to start the second half, Rowlett began an 18-3 run that started with Courtney Fine hitting a triple. Harlie Greer capped the run with a putback at the 1:50 mark for a 46-26 Rowlett lead.
Longview's Maci Hopkins sank two free throws to get the Lady Lobos within 19, 52-33, early in the fourth, but Rowlett staged a 10-4 run soon after that put the game away.
Rowlett accumulated 26 offensive rebounds, which helped the Lady Eagles claim a 34-25 advantage on the glass. Rowlett also snagged 21 steals thanks to a zone-press defense that flustered Longview (18-13) much of the night.
Eleven different Rowlett players scored. Lydia Williams, Dominque Oliver, and Taylor Dupuy combined for 33 points -- 11 each -- for the District 10-5A champs. Junior post Taylee Alexander pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds, including seven offensive.
Longview sophomore Kiara Ross scored a game-high 12 points, while Ravan Chism added 11. Kiambriya Sheridan added eight points, five boards, and four steals. Hopkins ans Smith combined for 11 rebounds.
Longview's roster lacks any seniors and includes a core of five sophomores. That gives Longview coach Keith Smith something to build on.
"If the girls will get in the gym and keep working, we'll have something to build on," Smith said. "You have to give it to (Rowlett). They're physical and they're good. Their rebounding and pressure killed us. We felt really good going into the half, and came out the third quarter, and didn't respond to their pressure. In the first half, (Rowlett) couldn't hit anything from the outside, but in the second half, they knocked down quite a few."
Rowlett led 16-8 entering the second quarter. The Lady Eagles' advantage reached double figures before Longview closed the first half on a 7-0 run to cut the deficit to five points, 28-23.