AP NEWS

Katy rallies to extend season, clinch area championship

February 18, 2019

The Katy girls basketball team took one of the most successful seasons in school history into the playoffs. The Tigers were not about to let a double-digit deficit cut short their postseason.

Down by 11 entering the fourth quarter, No. 11 Katy improved to 28-3 with a 48-47 thriller against a strong Heights squad Feb. 14 at Butler Field House. The Tigers won their second area championship in three years and are one win from their first-ever regional tournament appearance.

Katy won its 18th straight to close a week of tense playoff games. The District 19-6A champion Tigers outsprinted District 20-6A No. 4 seed Bush 79-74 in the bi-district playoffs. It was the most points Katy has allowed all season.

Katy found itself uncharacteristically struggling on the offensive end in the area playoffs, going the entire first quarter without a field goal as Heights took a 15-1 lead.

The Tigers clawed back to 29-15 at halftime but still faced an 11-point barrier entering the fourth quarter.

But they made a season-saving run beginning midway through the fourth quarter, with Allana Thompson and Amari Joulevette helping to lead the charge. Savannah May’s clutch steal and finish finally tied game at 46.

Thompson sunk the game-winner with 10 seconds remaining, sending Katy back to the Region III-6A quarterfinals. Another win and the Tigers will have home court in the regional tournament, scheduled for Feb. 22-23 at the Merrell Center.