GHS goes from upset to ousting


GLEN ROSE – The whooping and hollering of a few days earlier had been replaced by tears.

The joy of upsetting Wichita Falls Rider 54-46 in the area round of the 4A basketball playoffs was gone. Instead, the reality of a 55-37 season-ending loss to Aledo in the regional quarterfinals was setting in.

“They just had the better team tonight. They were determined to go to Snyder,” Lady Pirate Leta Andrews said of Aledo, which defeated Granbury (22-14) for a third time this season.

Unlike the other two meetings, however, which Granbury faithful could argue they should have won, there was no doubt about this one. The Ladycats (28-7) used a staunch defense to spark a 23-5 run over an 11-minute span, and that, ultimately, was the difference.

Well, that and the career game played by Aledo’s 6-4 sophomore Justis Szczepanski-Beavers. After basically breaking even in the first two games against Granbury’s heralded 6-4 senior Lilley Vander Zee, she scored 26 points, grabbed nine rebounds, blocked eight shots and had four steals in this rubber match.

“They just got a lot of momentum and we couldn’t answer,” said Lady Pirate junior guard Lauren Clough.

Senior guard Ashley Bonugli ended her GHS career with another strong outing. She led her team with 18 points, scoring 48 in three playoff games.

“Ashley brought her game when it counted most,” said Andrews.

“I have to buy that they gave me the best they can give,” Andrews said of her team. “We got beat by a nice team, a well-balanced team.”



DECATUR – Morgan Northcutt said she closes her eyes and imagined herself in the cozy confines of the James Wann Sports Center before each free throw attempt.

Friday she was a perfect 10-for-10 in the fourth quarter – scoring the Lady Pirates’ final 10 points, in fact – to help lift them to an upset of the state’s No. 6 team.

“I found my happy place,” Northcutt said with a smile as wide as the court on which just finished playing.

“It’s a simple rhythm.”

While the Lady Raiders (30-4) intensified their fourth-quarter defense and forced 11 Granbury turnovers in the period, they had no answer for Northcutt.

They’d foul her. She’d make free throws.

“I pulled her over and said, ‘Get that ball in your hands,’” said Andrews of Northcutt, who scored a career-high 26 points.

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Class 4A girls area playoff

Granbury 13 18 9 14 – 54

WF Rider 8 10 10 18 – 46

Granbury (22-13) scoring – Morgan Northcutt 26, Ashley Bonugli 16, Lilley Vander Zee 5, Shelby Cline 5, Lauren Clough 3.

Rider (30-4) leading scorer – Ashley Reid 14.

3-pointers – Granbury 7-10 (Northcutt 3, Bonugli 3, Clough 1), Rider 3-17.

Free throws – Granbury 17-20, Rider 9-12.

Rebounds – Granbury 38, (Vander Zee 12, Cline 9, Bonugli 8), Rider 12.

Granbury assists – Bonugli 4, Clough 4.

Turnovers – 17, Rider 7.

Regional quarterfinals

Aledo 8 12 17 18 – 55

Granbury 8 9 5 15 – 37

Granbury (22-14) scoring – Bonugli 18, Northcutt 9, Vander Zee 6, Bailey Cole 4.

Aledo (28-7) leading scorer – Justis Szczepanski-Beavers 26.

3-pointers – Granbury 2-8 (Bonugli 2), Aledo 2-7.

Free throws – Granbury 11-16, Aledo 15-22.

Rebounds – Granbury 21 (Cline 7, Vander Zee 7), Aledo 24 (Szczepanski-Beavers 9).

Blocks – Granbury: Vander Zee 3, Aledo: Szczepanski-Beavers 8.