Lake Dallas’ Jo Elliott, right, drives to the basket and is fouled by Braswell’s Angel Edwards on Tuesday in Little Elm.

LITTLE ELM — The Lake Dallas Lady Falcons were down by one at halftime of a pivotal game at Braswell on Tuesday night. Lake Dallas outscored the Lady Bengals 34-26 in the second half to pick up a 57-50 win and remain in second place in District 8-5A.

“I noticed so much composure from our girls,” Lake Dallas coach Katherine Madison said. “They fought so hard, and it was a solid team win because they worked together, they listened and they were disciplined in a way that I haven’t seen from them this season.”

After starting 0-2 in 8-5A play, the Lady Falcons have won six of their last seven district games.

“Experience has helped us the past couple weeks,” Madison said. “We are starting to find that will to win, even in the tough games.”

Three Lady Falcons accounted for 45 points. Jo Elliott and Dorian Norris led Lake Dallas with 16 points, while Mackenzie Buss finished with 13 points despite earning four fouls before the fourth quarter.

After Braswell took a 12-11 lead at the end of the first period on an Aminah Hall buzzer beater, the Lady Bengals started the second on a 9-0 run to gain a 10-point advantage.

Just as it looked as if Braswell was in control, the Lady Falcons responded with a 9-0 run over the next four minutes as the Lady Bengals went ice-cold from the field.

The only Braswell points in the final six minutes of the second period came on Hall’s 3-pointer from the corner, which halted the Lake Dallas run.

Lake Dallas’ Mackenzie Buss hit the second buzzer beater of the half, draining a floater from the free throw line to cut the Braswell lead to 24-23 heading into halftime.

“We had three starters have to sit on the bench because of foul trouble,” Braswell coach Paige Trujillo said. “I was happy with my girls who came in during the second quarter and kept our lead heading into halftime.”

The teams upped the tempo in the second half, running the floor and scoring in transition.

Lake Dallas was very active on the boards in the third period, scoring eight second-chance points and going into the fourth with a four-point lead.

“They’re a big, physical team and are really well coached,” Trujillo said. “We knew that we were going to have to block out down the stretch, but we missed a few block-out assignments and it got us in trouble.”

Elliott hit a 3-pointer and scored the first five points of the fourth for Lake Dallas, sparking a 10-3 run to put the Lady Falcons up by 11.

Braswell continued to fight. Darielle Neal knocked down two 3s in a row to pull the Lady Bengals within six.

With 2 1/2 minutes remaining, Braswell applied full-court pressure and got within three with one minute to play.

Elliott and Norris combined to make three of four free throws for Lake Dallas to close out the road victory.


Braswell 62, Lake Dallas 37

MJ Leslie opened with two 3-pointers and Lezeric Bailey delivered a dunk to give Braswell a 10-3 lead three minutes into the game.

“I thought we were super efficient on offense all the way through,” Braswell coach Nicholas Sekeres said. “We did a great job of pushing the ball, and when things got to half-court, our guys knocked them down.”

Lake Dallas guard Yash Mattu scored nine of the Falcons’ first 11 points and finished with a game-high 20 points and five 3-pointers.

Braswell senior guard Mark Kunz hit three 3-pointers to open the second quarter, giving the Bengals a double-digit advantage.

Lake Dallas (0-6 district) kept itself in the game with 3-point shooting, scoring 15 of its 23 first-half points from beyond the arc.

Lake Dallas held the ball without dribbling for the last 1:30 of the half, waiting for the last shot. The strategy worked, as Sean Woodson was fouled while attempting a 3 and made two free throws to pull Lake Dallas within eight.

“Braswell really likes to get out and run, so we tried to make it a low-possession game,” Lake Dallas coach Josh Welch said. “We just tried to give ourselves an opportunity to be in the game at the end. The ball didn’t fall in the second half, and they made a little run and got some distance from us.”

After making halftime adjustments, Braswell allowed just 14 points in the second half — less than what the Bengals gave up in the second quarter.

“We just talked about how we wanted to rotate out of some traps,” Sekeres said. “We really didn’t have to change all that much, just a couple of little tweaks.”

After outscoring the Falcons 16-5 in the third, Braswell (25-4, 4-3 district) coasted to the finish to move into position for a playoff spot.

Lake Dallas 57, Braswell 50

Lake Dallas 11 12 15 19 -- 57

Braswell 12 12 10 16 -- 50

Lake Dallas (19-11, 6-3 District 8-5A): Jo Elliott 16, Dorian Norris 16, Mackenzie Buss 13, Jorja Elliott 6, Bailey Broughton 4, Ary Hughes 2

Braswell (16-9, 4-4): Darielle Neal 12, Tiarah Starks 12, Aminah Hall 7, Jocelyn Shade 6, Makenna Sweet 6, Kamryn Gibson 5, Cortni Adams 2

Braswell 62, Lake Dallas 37

Braswell 17 14 16 15 -- 62

Lake Dallas 8 15 5 9 -- 37

Braswell (25-4, 4-3) – Cam Smith 15, Mark Kunz 12, MJ Leslie 10, Tariq Flemings 8, Lezeric Bailey 8, Kiran Anderson 5, Kameron Fricks 2, Jaylon Banks 2

Lake Dallas (0-6 District 8-5A) – Yash Mattu 20, Sean Woodson 9, Jayson Castleberry 2, Kyle Sassler 2, Austin Shepard 2, Desmond Holmes 2

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