Bobcats play for first place in district
Last updated 1/15/2024 at 11:34am
The boys district basketball schedules reach the half way point this week. Games on Friday, January 19, will mark the conclusion of the first half of district competition.
The Orangefield Bobcats in District 22-3A won their first five district games to share first place in the district with the Kountze Lions. The Bobcats and the Lions battled on Tuesday, January 16, at Kountze with the winner grabbing the outright district lead.
Orangefield won two games the second week of January. The Bobcats went to Anahuac on Friday, January 12, and defeated the Panthers 65-54 to improve their record to 5-0 in district.
Zane Wrinkle of the Bobcats was the leader on the court with 28 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 steals. Jaden Scales scored 21 points and added 2 assists for Orangefield. Kane Smith made 8 points and had 5 rebounds to help the Bobcats capture the victory.
Earlier on Tuesday, January 9, Orangefield won at home 53-46 over the East Chambers Buccaneers. High scorer for the Bobcats was Jaden Scales with 20 points, and he assisted on two other baskets. Zane Wrinkle was close to a triple double with 15 points, 10 rebounds, and 7 steals. Kane Smith contributed 9 points and 3 rebounds. Coming off the bench was Mason Manning to score 7 points and make 2 rebounds.
The game this Friday for Orangefield begins a two game homestand. The Bobcats play the Kirbyville Wildcats and then start the second half of district on Tuesday, January 23, against the Buna Cougars who they beat 54-47 at Buna to start district.
In District 19-4A the Bridge City Cardinals put themselves in a strong position for a playoff berth with two wins during the week. The Cardinals won a thrilling double overtime contest at home 64-51 on Friday, January 12, over the Lumberton Raiders.
Lincoln Breaux of Bridge City scored seven points in the first quarter to help the Cardinals take a 10-5 lead. The Raiders hit a three pointer at the buzzer to make the score 10-8 after one quarter.
A Raider three pointer about halfway through the second quarter gave Lumberton the lead 17-14. Another three increased the advantage to four points 20-16 with 3:37 left in the half.
Bridge City rallied scoring the final six points in the quarter. Bryce Linder hit two significant shots in the lane and Jagger Carlin made the last basket of the second quarter to put the Cardinals back on top 22-20 as the teams went to their locker rooms.
Aaden Bush of Bridge City scored his first points of the game on a three pointer in the third. The Cardinal advantage stretched to three points 31-28 at the end of the period as Breaux sank a late field goal.
It took the Raiders just over two minutes to tie the game at 31 apiece in the fourth quarter. Stephen Stone popped the cords with a three pointer at 3:40 of the fourth that seemed to give the Cardinals momentum but Lumberton stayed close and got two free throws with 6.9 seconds left in regulation to it up again 37-37 to force overtime.
Sophomore post Hunter Silveira made his presence felt early in the overtime when he took a feed from Breaux to sink a basket despite being fouled and then added the free throw to give the Cardinals an early two point lead. Bush duplicated the three point play after a pass from Breaux with 35 seconds left in the first overtime to again put Bridge City two points ahead, but Lumberton scored to tie the game 43-43 and send it to a second overtime period.
Just as it did in the first overtime Lumberton took the initial lead to start the second overtime with a successful free throw. Just as he did in the previous overtime period Silveira made a huge bucket to put Bridge City back on top 45-44, and the Cardinals would never surrender the lead again.
The final dagger to the heart of the Raiders came from the free throw line when Lumberton was forced to foul the Cardinals when they were in the bonus situation. Bridge City sank thirteen free throws in the second overtime to match the final score's margin of victory at thirteen points.
Making eight of eight from the charity strip for Bridge City was Aaden Bush who finished his long night with 17 points after being scoreless in the first half. Lincoln Breaux scored 15 points, dished out two big assists in the first overtime, and made multiple steals for the Cardinals. Jagger Carlin also finished in double figures with 12 points.
Coach Randall Robertson of Bridge City commented on the big win afterwards. "This was an unbelievable game. This is always a big game and a tough game when these two teams meet. We battled back and we found ways to get it done as the momentum was swinging back and forth every single possession until we finally built up a lead in the second overtime," Robertson replied.
The coach cited the clutch play of Hunter Silveira in the overtime. "We finally got the ball inside a little bit with Hunter Silveira giving us a big spark off the bench. He had five points in overtime and made the one that gave us the lead after which we finally were able to build on it because they had to start fouling, and we hit free throws in the end," Robertson exclaimed.
Earlier in the week on Tuesday Bridge City went to Vidor and came home with an important 57-44 victory over the Pirates. Free throws were a key in that game as the Cardinals made 14 of 17 at the free throw line.
Three Cardinals finished in double figures. Aiden Gutierrez, Lincoln Breaux, and Aaden Bush each scored 14 points in the game.
The two wins this week put Bridge City at 3-1 in excellent position to complete the first half of district in second place. Coach Robertson explained, "This was a big one for us because this one gapped us two games over a few of the other teams. We are currently going to be tied most likely with West Orange-Stark after they played Silsbee tonight. We've got Jasper on Tuesday at Jasper which is never easy, and then we end the first half with West Orange-Stark here at home so it's going to be another huge game for us. They're all big in our district, every game's tough, and we've got to come ready to play in every single one."
The West Orange-Stark Mustangs had their first half bye on Tuesday, January 9, before traveling to Silsbee on Friday. The Tigers were dominating taking WOS down 107-62 remaining undefeated in district and handing the Mustangs their first loss making them 3-1 in district .
West Orange-Stark played at home on Tuesday, January 16, against Little Cypress Mauriceville. As mentioned the Mustangs close out the first half of district this Friday at Bridge City.
The Little Cypress Mauriceville Bears split their two games of the week past. The Bears lost 54-47 in double overtime to Lumberton on Tuesday and defeated Jasper 57-33 on Friday to even their district record at 2-2.
Three Bears scored in double figures in the loss to Lumberton. Jonah Fuller led with 19 points, Jayden Benton had 12 points as did Alantheon Winn.
LCM had to battle with Jasper as the score was close through the first half. A big third quarter run by the Bears to start the second half proved pivotal to the win as Winn was the leading scorer with 29 points.
Little Cypress Mauriceville concludes the first half of district with two tough opponents. Tuesday the Bears went to West Orange-Stark and on Friday they play at home against first place Silsbee.