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Hallettsville outruns Goliad into regional final (w/gallery)

By MIKE FORMAN
Feb. 28, 2014 at 9:03 p.m.
Updated Feb. 27, 2014 at 8:28 p.m.

Hallettsville guard Landon McAfee, center right, puts up a jump shot while Goliad forward Alfred Ortiz, center, guards him during the  Region IV-2A semifinal game at Seguin High School.

SEGUIN - Hallettsville and Goliad like to play up-tempo, and no one was going to stop them.

The Brahmas and Tigers started to run from the opening tip and didn't stop until almost the final buzzer.

"These guys have played a lot at the park, and they really like this type of game," said Hallettsville coach Scott Cottenoir. "It was fun to watch."

Hallettsvile had the most fun, running off with a 70-50 Region IV-2A semifinal win Friday night at the Seguin High School gym.

The Brahmas improved to 22-6 and advanced to Saturday's noon final against Aransas Pass, a 48-46 semifinal winner over East Bernard.

"It was more of a fast game, and we like to play fast," said Hallettsville guard Landon McAfee. "We did a real good job of getting out in transition. Trent McGee, our point guard, does a good job of getting the ball to us when we need it."

Jimario Grounds scored 18 points, McAfee had 16, Walker Dowell had 14, and McGee added nine for the Brahmas, who attacked the basket on almost every possession.

"That's what we wanted to do," Cottenoir said. "We were going to run when we had the chance, and we were going to pull it out if we didn't have the layups. That's just kind of Hallettsville basketball."

The Brahmas never trailed but were unable to pull away from the Tigers (31-6) until midway through the final quarter.

Dalton Sturm scored 22 points, Dravian Duncan had 14, and Alfred Ortiz had 11 for Goliad, which pulled within 54-45 on a pair of free throws by Duncan with 5:01 left in the fourth quarter.

But Hallettsville scored the next 10 points, and its lead remained in double digits.

"They're much deeper on the perimeter - well everywhere," said Goliad coach David Kelley. "Their depth hurt us, their ball handling hurt us, and ours was exposed. Our ball handling hurt us."

Hallettsville had eight players score to five for Goliad and Cottenoir went frequently to his bench.

"We have a lot of threats," McAfee said. "They have to focus on other people and it opens up things for other players."

Hallettsville lost in the regional semifinals to Aransas Pass last season, and is hardly satisfied with taking an extra step.

"Our football team's done so well, the girls went to the state tournament today, and our baseball team won state," Cottenoir said. "We want to be able to put a little notch on our belt too."

Hallettsville 70, Goliad 50

HALLETTSVILLE - Dalton Herrington 5, Jamario Grounds 18, Trent McGee 9, Dailon Soto 2, Walker Dowell 14, Landon McAfee 16, Tim Sheppard 3, Hunter Mican 3.

GOLIAD - Dravian Duncan 14, Dalton Sturm 22, Eric Long 2, Alfred Ortiz 11, Carl Roy 3.

Halftime: Hallettsville 35-25. 3-pointers: McAfee, McGee, Mican, Sheppard, Sturm 2, Duncan, Roy.

Records: Hallettsville 22-6; Goliad 31-6.

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