GONZALES -- After making adjustments on defense, the Gonzales Lady Apaches allowed just 10 points in the second half to the visiting Navarro Lady Panthers. But the shots were just not converting as Navarro bested the Lady Apaches 38-27, dropping Gonzales to 7-2 in district, good for second place.
“I couldn't fault them for their effort, effort was great,” Gonzales head coach Lance Butler said. “[We] outscored them in the second half, it just came down to the fact that we couldn’t make shots.”
After going down 14-9 to end the first quarter, the Lady Apaches were outscored 14-5 in the second quarter, with help from some outside shooting.
“Our whole purpose of going diamond-and-one in the first half was keeping ‘Double 0’ out of the paint because she hurt us the last time we played,” Butler explained.”They didn’t hit a three the last time we played, so we thought by packing it in, keeping her out, we’d make them make shots and they did.”
Navarro converted three threes in the first half, including two in the second quarter to go up 28-13 at the half.
“Second half we had to man up and it just came down to getting back into it in the third quarter,” Butler continued. “The girls just worked hard. That’s all that was. We just couldn’t turn the turnovers early in that third quarter into enough points to get close enough to really make it a game.”
The Lady Apaches forced multiple turnovers and Gonzales’ Devon Williams was the team’s best offensive option, scoring all 14 of the team’s second-half points. She ended the night with a team-leading 18 points.
But down by 11 with 4:11 left in the game, Navarro opted to drain as much of the clock as possible, passing the ball around until they could find an opening on offense. The Lady Panthers would just score two points, both from free throws, the rest of the night.
With the loss, Navarro now leads District 30-4A with a 9-1 record with two games to go. Gonzales goes to 7-2 with three games left in their schedule.
Even with the back-to-back losses, the Lady Apaches still have a path toward a district title.
“I told them to take the weekend off, enjoy themselves, keep their heads high, we come back in Monday and we’ve got to win out, we have no choice,” Butler said. “We’re on the road at Poteet, got Pleasanton here and then we’re on the road at Brooks. I told them we hope we get some help from La Vernia and Cuero and if so, then we split for the district title. We still have that as our focus, but we have to take care of business and now we’re in a position where we have to hope for help.”
The Lady Apaches travel to Poteet on Tuesday, with tipoff scheduled for 6:15 p.m. Gonzales then hosts Pleasanton next Friday, Feb. 7 at 6:15 p.m.