The Martins Mill Lady Mustangs shoot for their eighth straight trip to the state basketball tournament today.
But there are some Lady Mustangs from Slocum standing in their way.
The two powerhouse East Texas squads will be eyeing Austin when they meet in the Class 1A Division I Region III championship at Tyler Junior College’s Wagstaff Gymnasium.
Tipoff is 10 a.m.
Both squads played efficient fundamental basketball on Friday to register semifinal wins.
No. 1 Martins Mill (31-5) moved to its eighth consecutive regional final with a 53-46 win over scrappy No. 15 Zavalla (31-7).
In the first game, No. 8 Slocum (32-2) scored a 44-30 upset over previously unbeaten and No. 2 Martinsville (34-1).
Slocum 44, Martinsville 30
Slocum spoiled a matchup of No. 1 vs. No. 2 and the Mill vs. the Ville.
But the Lady Mustangs and their fans wouldn’t have it any other way.
Slocum’s suffocating defense clamped down on the Lady Pirates.
After falling behind 7-2, the Lady Mustangs came back and controlled the game.
Kelsee Webb, a sophomore, led Slocum with 14 points and eight rebounds, while Valarie Larkin (13 points) and Jordan Ives (12 points) were also in double figures.
Larkin, Ives and Landry Lane each had six boards.
Gabby Spencer had 17 points and seven rebounds. She was the only Lady Pirate in double figures scoring, but Daisy Sequeda, a 5-5 sophomore, had 12 rebounds. Emily Knight had seven boards.
Slocum had only six turnovers in the game, while Martinsville had just eight.
Martins Mill 53, Zavalla 46
Martins Mill was challenged for one of the few times in regionals.
Big outbursts in the first and fourth quarters helped the Lady Mustangs hold off the Lady Eagles.
Martins Mill broke out to a 17-4 first-quarter lead, forcing Zavalla coach Jan West to take three timeouts to try and settle her squad.
It worked as the Lady Eagles fought back to tie the game at 27-27 at halftime and 38-38 entering the fourth quarter.
With Martins Mill up 44-42 with just under three minutes left in the game, the Lady Mustangs ran off six straight points (two by Haily Jenkins and four from Taylor Munns) to take a 50-42 lead with just 1:13 left in the game.
“Zavalla came out to play,” Martins Mill coach Doug Barncastle said. “A couple of times we had a chance to open it up, but Zavalla hit the shots when they needed to. We came out in the fourth (quarter) and played well defensively. I thought we dug our heels in and made some smart decisions.”
Jenkins led the Lady Mustangs with 17 points, while Cheyenne Brown tossed in 16. Munns added 10.
Brown also had nine rebounds.
Caitlyn Lambert, a 6-4 junior, led the Lady Eagles with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Shelby Kay Lee and Sara Dugat added 12 and 10 points, respectively. Dugat had seven boards.
Class 1A Division I
Region III Semifinals
No. 8 Slocum 44,
No. 2 Martinsville 30
Martinsville 7 5 8 10 — 30
Slocum 6 8 11 19 — 44
MARTINSVILLE — Taylor Enloe, 8; Katylyn Humphreys, 0; Magen Gross, 0; Myleah Davis, 3; Karlee Burnaman, 0; Daisy Sequeda, 2; Gabby Spencer, 17; Emily Knight, 0.
SLOCUM — Brooke January, 0; Valarie Larkin, 13; Jordan Ives, 12; Kelsee Webb, 14; Landry Lane, 4; Brice Sizemore, 1.
THREE POINT GOALS — M: Davis. S: Larkin (2), Webb.
RECORDS — Martinsville 34-1, Slocum 32-2.
No. 1 Martins Mill 53,
No. 15 Zavalla 46
Zavalla 8 19 11 8 — 46
Martins Mill 17 10 11 15 — 53
ZAVALLA — Sara Dugat, 10; Shelby Kay Lee, 12; Krissy Boulware, 0; Shelby Cryer, 8; Angel Blair, 0; Caitlyn Lambert, 16.
MARTINS MILL — Alyssa Pate, 6; Cassidy McCoy, 0; Taylor Munns, 10; Haily Jenkins, 17; Cheyenne Brown, 16; Madison Daniel, 0; Megan Weatherford, 4.
THREE POINT GOALS — Z: Lee (2). MM: Jenkins.
RECORDS — Zavalla 31-7, Martins Mill 31-5.