Lady Pioneers reach fourth straight final

The North Central Texas Academy Lady Pioneers fought through a tough challenge from Plainview Christian Academy Friday for a 44-42 triumph to advance to Saturday’s championship game in the TAPPS Class A state tournament in Mansfield. NCTA (21-5) will face Fredericksburg Heritage Saturday at 11 a.m. Carolina Bianchi of NCTA led all scorers with 26 points. In the final 9 seconds, Bianchi sank four of four free throws after Plainview had gained a 41-38 lead with 1:30 remaining. The Lady Pioneers will be playing for their fourth straight state title.