Allen boys, Duncanville girls secure Texas Invitational Division I crowns
“The road to state,” the McDonald’s Texas Invitational’s popular slogan, was truly that for Allen High School in 2017.
Although the Eagles didn’t win the Texas Invitational’s ultimate prize, their third-place trophy acted as a crystal ball of things to come because Allen went on to capture the Class 6A state title.
Now one wonders what Saturday night’s outcome means for the grand scheme of things when they get to play the state tournament next March?
Allen began its road to state and a possible repeat state title by capturing the 16th annual Texas Invitational Division I boys crown with a hard-fought 64-62 win over Richardson J.J. Pearce at Phillips Field House.
After rushing out to a 19-3 start, Allen had to hold off a furious Pearce rally that saw the Mustangs outscore Allen 60-45 the rest of the way.
Deadlocked 62-62, Allen’s Thailand Elder scored off a long pass with 18 seconds remaining for what proved to be the winning points.
After Allen missed the front end of a 1-and-1 situation at the foul line with 7.6 seconds remaining, the Mustangs hurriedly worked the ball down where Chozen Amadi appeared to get a last-second shot off from the left of the goal. But it had little chance of going in since it looked like he was behind the basket.
Allen had a 58-52 advantage well into the fourth period, before Pearce outscored the Eagles 10-4, creating that 62-62 tie with 1:24 remaining.
It was still tied and Pearce had the ball, but two looks at the bucket failed to net any points.
Isaiah Stevens was named MVP for his work early in the contest. He scored 14 first-half points and was one of the reasons the team owned that 19-3 lead.
But Pearce surged back with the help of Drew Timme, the team’s 6-11 post player and all-tournament team selection. Timme finished with the double-double of 19 points and 11 rebounds. He also picked up two assists after his teammates were trailing 58-52.
Katy Tompkins, the 2017 Division I champion, captured the Division I Silver title with a 53-40 victory over Morton Ranch. The Division I Bronze crown was snared by Pearland, courtesy of a 44-40 win over Dickinson.
In the girls’ Division I championship game, Duncanville secured its fourth consecutive title with an easy 64-45 win over District 22-6A foe Summer Creek.
The Silver winner was Cy-Creek, following an 81-52 triumph over Houston Westside. North Crowley claimed the Division I Bronze prize with a 49-42 win over Pearland.