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Fresh off an upset over McHi last weekend, the Lady Coyotes of La Joya welcomed the Sharyland Lady Rattlers in a Tuesday night showdown last night. Unlike the teams' first meeting when the Rattlers cruised to a win, La Joya would give the district leaders all they could handle before falling in the final seconds, 38-36.
The game ended as a thriller but began as a dud. Six minutes into the game the score stood 2-1, favoring Shary. The last two minutes of the first quarter saw the foes exchange baskets. With just seconds remaining and La Joya in possession and down 3-4, Ali Navarro grabbed a Karla Trevino miss and put it straight back in to give her team a 5-4 lead when the first quarter buzzer sounded five seconds later.
While the first quarter was limited in point production, both teams would up their games. On Sharyland's part, the second quarter was all Chelsea Cole. The quick guard caught fire early and it turned out to be perfect timing for her teammates who were constantly getting frustrated by La Joya's full court press. Though she would be matched nearly point for point by the home team, Cole would score ten her team's 12 second quarter points.
However, while the Rattlers were clinging to a 16-15 lead in the final minutes, La Joya's Trevino got fouled on the shot with 1.2 seconds remaining. The freshman went on to hit both free throws to give her team the lead heading into the locker room.
Trevino would come out of the break well rested and ready to pick up where she left off. When teammate and team leader Elva Hinojosa stole the ball early, she found Trevino for a wide open layup.
The two teams would again trade the lead back and forth, creating excitement that would get the opposite crowds' vocals higher and higher at each basket.
The La Joya crowd would really get into it in the final minute when Trevino again came up with some big plays. Down two in the final minute, Trevino took a three that missed. However, the small guard didn't give up on the play, got a steal and then drove the baseline for a layup and foul.
After hitting the foul shot, again the freshman would jump in the spotlight. Again getting another steal, this time on the inbounds, Trevino would kick the ball out to Hinoyosa who stalled the ball until less than ten seconds left.
In those final seconds the Lady Coyotes passed the ball around the three-point arc, eventually finding Trevino who, though not wide open, had enough space to launch up a buzzer beater that climatically went in, giving the team a 32-28 lead heading into the fourth.
Like the first, the fourth quarter would be short in points. However, unlike the end of the first, the second and the third quarters when La Joya would score at the end to take the lead, Sharyland would be triumphant.
Clarissa Suarez would prove to be the difference. The smooth guard would hit a pretty floater to tie the game at 34 with four minutes remaining and then hit two free throws to take the lead.
La Joya's Hinojosa would respond by a pretty drive herself that ended in a soft spin off the glass to score and tie the game. However, the tie wouldn't last as Sharyland would score on the other end to take the lead.
When the Coyotes couldn't convert on their end, the Rattlers went into a stall mode. However, with 25 seconds remaining Navarro intercepted a Shary pass, giving her team one last chance to send the game in overtime or even to win.
In their last possession, Leyla Platas ended up with the ball in the last seconds. Platas attempt was blocked and the loose ball ended up in the hands of both teams with less than a second to play. Shary had the possession arrow, allowing the team to end the game by completing the inbounds.
The win moves Shary to 7-1 in district. The Lady Rattlers are now set to host McHi on Friday in a battle for first place.
La Joya will visit Rowe, who they beat in their first match-up, 48-24. The Coyotes are now 3-4.
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The Progress Times is the hometown newspaper for the local communities of Mission, Sharyland, Alton, Palmview, La Joya and surrounding areas in Western Hidalgo County. We have a staff of veteran reporters who work diligently every week to bring our readers the latest news as it affects their hometown area and people.