Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

Sports

March 9, 2013

Navarro Hoops: Bulldogs fall in Region XIV Final

Lee headed to Hutch after 92-77 victory over Navarro

TYLER —  Navarro won more conference games than any team in Region XIX this season. And the Runnin' Bulldogs aren't going to Hutch.

Navarro lost for the first time in the Region XIV Championship Game during the Johnny Estelle era, falling to No. 5 seed Lee College 92-77 on Saturday night at UT Tyler's Herrington Patriot Center.

The second-seeded Bulldogs were regular season co-champions in Region XIV and they won twice in the tournament before losing to the Runnin' Rebels. Navarro's 17 wins against conference opponents gives them one more than Kilgore and Lee, but both of those are the teams that are headed to the NJCAA Natioanl Tournament.

Navarro at 25-7 still could be alive for one of the at-large bids handed out for the first time for the national tournament, but with two teams already going to Hutch from Region XIV, and several upsets in other regional tournaments, the Bulldogs are a long shot to make it.

Navarro had two chances to win and get in -- once in the regular season against Kilgore (the Dawgs lost by 10) and one last opportunity Saturday night against Lee. But the Rebels out-shot, out-rebounded and got to more 50-50 balls than the Bulldogs and led for all but five minutes of the game.

"We couldn't get over the hump," Estelle said. "Lee played great. The first-round game is the key game. They hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer against Blinn and that got them on a roll."

Lee, which didn't get one of the four first-round byes, won 76-73 against Blinn in the first round, then rolled over three of the top teams in the tournament.  The Rebels beat No. 4 Jacksonville, 101-96, No. 1 seed Kilgore 88-73 and No. 2 seed Navarro.

The Bulldogs will look back at two things -- a first half they didn't close out and a second half where they couldn't break through and put pressure on a Lee team that hadn't played in the tournament final in years.

Navarro, which led twice early in the game, fell behind by 12 points at 26-14 with 7:57 left in the first half, then made a slow march back. The Bulldogs cut the lead to 31-25 with 1:47 left and had a chance for a fast break to get within four, but a travelling call on David Woodard with Toney Foster breaking free for a dunk halted Navarro's momentum.

Lee outscored Navarro 7-2 after that, including a 3-pointer at the buzzer by Rebels guard William Knowles as the Bulldogs trailed 38-27 at the half.

Lee kept its lead in double digits for most of the second half, but the Bulldogs did make a late run to cut the lead to 71-65 on free throws by Harrison Hawkins with 4:12 left in the game. Don Thomas hit a clutch 3-pointer for a nine-point lead, but Princeton Onwas scored and David Woodard drew a foul and two free throws with 2:59 left in the game.

Woodard, who played brilliantly in the tournament, missed both free throws and Lee's Trahson Burrell converted a 3-point lead to take a 77-67 lead with 2:45 left. The Bulldogs pulled back within eight points on two free throws, but Lee closed out the win with 15-6 run.

It was a stunning ending for Estelle and the Bulldogs. Navarro was 13-1 in the regional tournament and had won all three championship games under Estelle before Saturday's loss.

Now it's time for the Bulldogs to regroup and get back to Hutch next year.

"Selfishly I want to win every game," Estelle said. "But we're humble at Navarro, we give Lee credit and now it's time to get back to work. The guys will come back hungry and ready to win again."

Text Only
Sports
  • Back in Action.jpg GC Football: Two-a-days: Back to Action

    It's here.
    When the sun comes up Monday morning it's not just the dawn of a new day, but the dawn of a new season — it's the beginning of two-a-days.
    Eight of the nine schools in the Golden Circle will begin football practice Monday while Corsicana waits until Aug. 8 to start. The Tigers begin a week later because they held spring practice.
    For last year's playoff teams such as Mildred, Blooming Grove, Kerens, Frost and Hubbard Monday begins a road back to the postseason and for everyone else its the start of a new march. For everyone, it's the most optimistic day of the year.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • RON MORGAN.jpg Morgan: ESPN was wrong in suspending Smith

    I won’t be watching ESPN this coming week. For a network that has been made into an empire by covering baseballs, footballs, basketballs, golf balls, soccer balls, tennis balls (I’ve never watched hockey, but I understand they have no balls), this network is much like hockey. They lack the things they are covering.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • BreannaVB.jpg GC Volleyball Summer Tour:The tradition is back at Kerens

    Breanna Baxter is back.
    That's bad news for anyone facing the Kerens volleyball team this year.
    But there is so much more than Baxter, an all-state player in volleyball, basketball and track & field who was the Golden Circle Female Athlete of the Year in 2014.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mildred 14U.jpg TTBBA: Mildred 14U repeats as state champs

    The Mildred Eagles completed their season by winning back to back 14U TTBA state titles. The Eagles went 18-0 and captured the title in Hillsboro, where they won five games.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dawson VB.jpg GC Volleyball Summer Tour: Dawson eyes playoffs

    Nothing feels the same at Dawson.
    It's not only a new season in a new district but second-year Coach Alica Sexton enters the year after having a full season with her kids — a season that revamped the program at Dawson, where they hadn't won in years.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • I7-31-14 Mayper.jpg Navarro Football: Nothing changes for success-minded Bulldogs

    It didn't take long for Navarro football Coach Brian Mayper  to deliver his preseason message at the SWJCFC Media Day Thursday.
    “No surprises at Navarro,'' said Mayper, the first of the seven conference coaches to speak to the media. “We're running the same stuff. You guys know we're going to run the ball. And thank God, we're not changes defenses again this year.''
    Mayper's real message is that life at Navarro is all about winning, and all about a culture that expects to win.
    “We expect to win them all. If you don't, you're in the wrong business,'' Mayper said. “I think our kids expect it, too.''

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-31-14 Jae.jpg GC Volleyball Summer Tour: Frost set for a big season

    Everybody's back at Frost.
    Yes, everybody.
    “This will probably never happen again,'' said Frost volleyball Coach Elaine Woods, who returns every player from last year's team.
    They are not only back, but they are talented — arguably the most talented group of volleyball players in Frost history.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-30-14 Davis.jpg Former Cowboy Keith Davis delivers motivational speech

    Keith Davis believes in dreams.
    He lived his.
    That was one of the messages Davis, a former Dallas Cowboys safety, delivered to a standing-room-only crowd of youngsters Tuesday at the Boys & Girls Club, where he spoke with enthusiasm and energy about life inside and outside of the NFL.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-30 web Wortham TTBA picture.jpg TTBB: Wortham takes second at state tournament

    The Wortham Bulldogs made an impressive run at the Texas Teenage Baseball Association High School Eligible State Tournament in Buffalo and took second in the state.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-29-14 tiger sharks.jpg Tiger Sharks make splash at state meet

    There are leaps and bounds, and then there's what the Corsicana YMCA Tiger Sharks did over the weekend at the Lone Star state swimming meet in Frisco.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

House Ads
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction
Twitter Updates