LUBBOCK, Texas - Freshman Ashley Roberts scored a game high 27 points but this was not enough as the Lady Texans (19-9) fell to Cisco College (25-6) 71-64 in the first round of the Region 5 basketball tournament Thursday afternoon at the Rip Griffin Center.
Cisco College jumped out to a nine point lead by the midway point of the first half and led by as many as 11 points, 24-13, with 6 minutes, 49 seconds remaining.
Brittney Wilkerson dished the ball to Toi'Easha Cooper who cut the lead to nine and then Roberts scored consecutive baskets, the first on a fast break play and the latter a deep three that got South Plains back to within four points.
It looked as if the Lady Texans would head to the locker room down eight after Cisco's Roselis Silva-Serrano converted three free throws after being fouled by Roberts in the act of shooting to give the Lady Wranglers a 37-29 lead.
With time winding down, Roberts took the inbounds and appeared to be in the act of shooting a desperation shot to end the half and was fouled. The call on the court was that the foul occurred on the floor and Roberts went to the line and converted both bonus free throws to send her team to the locker room down six, 37-31.
Roberts, who made 7-of-8 from the charity stripe, began the second half with two free throws and Toi'Easha Cooper got South Plains within a field goal at the 15:43 mark. Minutes later, Brittney Wilkerson rebounded her own missed shot and put it back to tie the game 40-40.
Cooper gave the Lady Texans their first lead since the opening minutes when Cooper converted a couple free throws to give South Plains a 44-43 advantage.
The two teams would share a tie three more times over the next 51/2 minutes, the last coming with 6:21 remaining on the clock when Raely Parada forced a tie with two free throws. Cisco responded with a 5-0 run.
The Lady Texans would get to within three points, but Cisco would get a two-point field goal from Ashley Stamp with less than a minute remaining to make it a five point advantage for the Lady Wranglers. After a three-point miss by Lorie Romaine, South Plains had to foul, sending MaKayla Grahn to the line who made both attempts, putting South Plains at a seven point disadvantage.
Cisco was able to contain star Lady Texan post Kelsey Canavan, who finished the game nine points and five rebounds. Canavan came in to the contest with 14 consecutive double-doubles.
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