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Palacios defense stops Karnes City

By Marcus Gutierrez
Feb. 16, 2017 at 11:36 p.m.

When the shots aren't falling for Palacios, the Sharkettes turn to their press defense.

After senior point guard Lila Filip knocked down four straight free throws to go up nine, the Palacios defense forced three straight turnovers to secure a 34-25 victory over Karnes City in a Class 3A area round playoff game at the Victoria District Event Center on Thursday.

"Our defense was outstanding the whole game," Filip said. "We came out strong on defense, and that's how you win games. Everyone stepped up tonight and we got the win and our season continues."

Palacios (31-3) will advance to the quarterfinals, and will play the winner of Friday's area matchup between Marion and Blanco.

Karnes City ends the season 24-9.

The Sharkettes caused 31 turnovers in the game and held the Lady Badgers to eight points or less in each quarter.

"Our press and trap defense is our bread and butter," said Palacios head coach Aaron Wollam. "It's something that we work on every day and tonight I thought it was one of our best defensive performances. We played lights out on defense."

Karnes City got within five after a 5-0 run with 2:32 left in the fourth, but didn't score the rest of the game.

"I just told them that we had plenty of time left on the clock and we just need to keep on playing," Wollam said. "We won 30 games this year and we're a good team. They have the confidence in themselves and they played good when they needed to."

The Sharkettes struggled shooting in the first quarter, but gave the ball in the post to senior Vriana Hernandez.

Hernandez scored six of the eight Sharkettes' points in the first.

"I just focused shooting my shot," Hernandez said. "I was making sure following through my shot like coach always says. We weren't shooting well so I wanted to make sure when I got the ball I scored. For a lot of us this is our senior year and want to leave it all on the court."

With Karnes City up by two, the Sharkettes went on a 10-0 run midway through the second to take an eight-point lead.

"We struggled offensively tonight, but we were able to make some shots when we needed too," Wollam said.

But the Lady Badgers made their move to close out the second.

Kayce Jo Mayes hit back-to-back layups and the Lady Badgers cut Palacios' lead to four at halftime.

Filip (18 points) found her shot in the third quarter and scored five of Palacios' seven points to take a 25-18 advantage into the fourth.

"When you're not making your shots you still have to put them up," Filip said. "You just have to not think about your missed shots and continue to shoot."

Kiera Robinson scored 11 points for the Lady Badgers.

"This is a great time for the Palacios community right now," Wollam said. "We got a fire truck escort as we left town and everyone is excited. We will celebrate tonight, but we have another game to prepare for and we want to keep going in the playoffs."

Area

Palacios 34, Karnes City 25

Class 3A

Points - (Palacios) Jessie Cepak 2, Sarah Filip 4, Aleena Acosta 2, Lila Filip 18, Vriana Hernandez 6, Bree Simmons 2. (Karnes City) Aileen Krause 4, Kendall Kelly 4, Kiera Robinson 11, Kacye Jo Mayes 4.

Halftime - Palacios 18, Karnes City 14. 3-pointers - L. Filip 2, Robinson 1.

Records - Palacios 31-3, Karnes City 24-9

Poth 48, Hallettsville 44

Class 2A

Falls City 56, Ben Bolt 45

Class 1A

Moulton 60, Leakey 45


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