SNYDER — The No. 15 Brownwood Lady Lions shook off a 14-point first half with 35 in the second, running away from the Snyder Lady Tigers for a 49-16 victory Tuesday night that secured the second playoff seed out of District 5-4A.
Sage Cupps also reached the 1,000-point mark for her Brownwood career — the second Lady Lion to achieve that feat this season, joining Mallory Garcia, and fifth in head coach Heather Hohertz’s nine-year tenure.
Hohertz also notched the 199th victory of her career — all at Brownwood — and can earn No. 200 when the Lady Lions (28-5, 6-2) tangle with District 6-4A third seed Wichita Falls Hirschi in bi-district playoff action at 6 p.m. Monday in Anson.
“Hirschi is athletic and they have a really good point guard that can score off the dribble,” Hohertz said. “They like to drive and press you on defense. We can score if we take care of the ball, and I like my chances with the team I have.
“We opened district rough that first game with Wylie and we’ve been up and down with injuries, having to change the starting lineup a few times. But you can’t take anything away from this team, I think they’re pretty special and one of the best that I’ve coached. We’re going to try and keep putting it together and make a run at the regional tournament.”
Against Snyder (12-17, 4-4), the Lady Lions led just 5-2 after one quarter and 14-8 at halftime, but caught fire in the third period. Brownwood extended its lead to 27-14 through three periods and outscored the Lady Tigers, 22-2, during the fourth quarter.
“The first half, I really don’t know how to explain it,” Hohertz said. “It’s not like we played bad, we just couldn’t hit a shot. Our rebounding was there, we fouled a little bit too much in the first half, that’s where five of their points came from. They only made one field goal in the first half. At halftime I just told them to quit fouling, don’t put them on the line because they can’t really score on us.
“In the second half we got out and ran, got some tips on balls and got some rebounds and quick outlets to get our transition going. I told the girls not to worry about the misses, just step up and make the next one. They were hanging their heads a little bit because they kept missing, but they bounced back in the second half in a good way.”
Cupps finished with a team-high 18 points, draining a three-pointer in the closing seconds to land right on 1,000 points.
“That says something about her work ethic and the kind of player she is to only be at Brownwood for two years and have 1,000 points,” Hohertz said. “She’s a special player that can score with the best of them, and I’m really proud of her.”
Garcia chipped in 14 points trailed by Ryleigh Dalleh with seven, Taytum Sutton and Kenya Barnes with four apiece and Hadley Monroe with two points.
The bigger contributions from Sutton and Barnes came on the glass with a combined 21 rebounds that allowed Brownwood to maintain its lead throughout despite the early offensive woes.
“Kenya and Taytum were huge for us rebounding-wise,” Hohertz said. “Kenya finished with nine rebounds and seven offensive and Taytum had 12 and six offensive. As a team, we rebounded the ball really well. We had 19 offensive rebounds and we can’t ask for much more than that.
“It was a really good effort, I was really proud of them and how they bounced back after the cold shooting in the first half and finished off district in the right way.”