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Center’s injury sinks Smithson Valley upset bid

January 9, 2019

Playing with energy and confidence, Smithson Valley had top-ranked Judson on its heels.

But when 6-1 junior center Tanyse Moehrig crashed to the floor late in the second quarter with an apparent knee injury, it was all over for the Rangers.

Moehrig landed awkwardly after scoring, and No. 6 Smithson Valley never recovered as Judson ran away with a 64-48 home victory.

“She was dominating the game,” Judson coach Triva Corrales said. “We had no answer for her. I know it was a big loss for Smithson Valley. Unfortunately in this game, things like that happen. We wish the best for her. We wanted to capitalize since she was out of the paint. We needed to get to the basket and create some space for us and some easy scores.”

The Rangers led 30-27 when Moehrig was taken off the court in a wheelchair with 40 seconds left in the second quarter. Judson took advantage of Moehrig’s absence by scoring the final five points of the half to take its first lead since the game’s opening score.

“When she went out, she had 16 points,” Judson senior guard-forward Kyra White said. “She’s a very big post presence inside, and that’s what they like to look for — feeding her inside and going off her energy.”

The Rangers struggled after Moehrig left the game, scoring just seven points in the third quarter as the Rockets took a 48-37 lead heading into the fourth.

“It impacted us greatly because they play so much defense pushing out,” Smithson Valley coach David Farber said. “They faster they push out, they are no longer worried about us inside because we don’t have another Tanyse. … It’s a distraction when one of your teammates you love goes down like that.”

The Rockets were in a battle until that point.

The Rangers led 17-13 after the first quarter thanks to a pair of 3-pointers by Ashley Adascyk in the final 2:07. The Rangers stretched the lead to as much as six in the second quarter as Moehrig, who averages a double-double, scored 12 points in the period. She had tallied eight straight before she was injured.

“It was very tough,” Judson sophomore Kierra Sanderlin said. “We got tired quick. That first half we got tired. It took a lot of energy out of us.”

White finished with 24 points and 17 rebounds to lead the Rockets, who improved to 24-4 overall and 6-0 in District 26-6A. Smithson Valley dropped to 20-5 and 5-1. Sanderlin added 15 points and Corina Carter added 11.

Judson closes out the first round of district play at New Braunfels Canyon on Friday.

“This was a very big win,” White said. “We have a lot of momentum. We come out each game ready to win, especially on our home court, and so beating another undefeated team gives us more energy and pride to keep going.”

The victory was coach Triva Corrales’ 300th of a 15-year head-coaching career that’s also had a stop at Burbank.

“A lot of kids have played hard for me everywhere I’ve been,” Corrales said. “They’ve put in the blood, sweat and tears. I’m grateful to each athlete I’ve been blessed to coach. It’s an incredible opportunity to have that many wins under my belt.”

White, who has been a starter since her freshman season, was happy to be a part of her coach’s milestone victory.

“I’m grateful to have her by my side,” White said. “It means a lot because she’s done so much for us. It feels good to pay her back.”

dhinojosa@express-news.net

Twitter: @hinojosa_david

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