The TGCA Class 3A Top 25 showdown between the No. 22 Brownwood Lady Lions and No. 17 Abilene Wylie Lady Bulldogs didn’t quite live up to its billing, as Brownwood suffered through one of its worst offensive performances of the Heather Hohertz coaching era.
Playing without second-leading scorer Trejouir Wilson, the Lady Lions failed to score more than six points in any quarter until the fourth as Wylie cruised to a 43-23 victory Friday at Warren Gym.
“Not having your second-best scorer hurts a lot,” Hohertz said. “In the big games, she’s been the one to score. Her not being here was definitely a big loss.”
Despite their offensive struggles, the Lady Lions (10-3) — whose four-game win streak came to an end — trailed by just eight points at halftime, 19-11.
The third period proved to a be a nightmare for Brownwood, however, as the Lady Bulldogs (12-4) outscored the Lady Lions 22-2 in the frame, tallying the final 18 points in succession.
“I felt like we weren’t focused at all, didn’t play with much energy and didn’t do a lot offensively,” Hohertz said. “In the third quarter we ran out of gas and lost our focus even more than we already had. That falls back on me, but we’re going to get it fixed and get ready for the tournament on the 26th.”
Brownwood will face Andrews in the opening round of the Lubbock Caprock tournament the day after Christmas.
Defensively, the Lady Lions yielded just 43 points, but 20 came from six-foot-plus sophomore post Brittany Brewer, a player Brownwood could not come close to matching in height.
“Not having Heaven (Walker) sometimes hurts a lot, especially when we play girls over six foot,” said Hohertz of her post who was lost before the season started with an ACL injury. “I told the girls before the game we weren’t going to be able to stop (Brewer), but we had to contain her. For the most part in the first half I thought we did an OK job with that, but we didn’t put it together in the second half.”
Keeta Vaccaro finished with eight points to pace Brownwood followed by four from Alyson Finnigan, three each from Kodi Ribble and Unique Jefferson, two apiece from Ashley Vaccaro and Vici Henry and Sarah Fox chipped in one point.
Also scoring for the Lady Bulldogs were Punkin Mack with 10 points, London Weilert with four, Peyton Sanders, Kinsey Christian, Taylor Brasel and Madi Garcia with two points apiece and Makenley Lunsford contributed one point.
The Lady Lions led 5-4 following a three-pointer by Finnigan with 5:32 left in the first period, but Wylie tallied the final nine points of the quarter to take a 13-5 edge into the second period.
Brownwood closed to within four points, 13-9, on a free throw by Jefferson and a trey from Ribble with 5:54 left before halftime, but Wylie stretched the lead to 19-11 by intermission.
Wylie scored the first four points of the second half to open a 23-11 lead, which Brownwood cut to 23-13 on Henry’s bucket at 5:51 of the third period. The Lady Lions did not score again until 7:36 remained in the game — a 6:15 drought that allowed Wylie to build a 28-point edge.