Cougars win first playoff game since 2005


LUBBOCK — Phillip McKinney doled out 14 assists and Andrew Melhart hit for 20 points as Grace Community defeated El Paso Lydia in the TAPPS 4A bi-district playoffs on Friday at Lubbock Trinity Christian School.

The Cougars (17-15) ensured they’ll finish coach Neal Welch’s first season in charge with a winning record. They’ll play Lubbock Trinity today at 2:30 p.m. in the area round.

Verlo Levels and Trevor Gunter pitched in 19 points apiece for Grace, which won a playoff game for the first time since 2005.

The Cougars had 10 different players score and five different players hit 3-pointers, led by six from Melhart, who also had four steals.

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TAPPS 4A Bi-District Playoff

At Lubbock Trinity Christian School

Grace Community 80, El Paso Lydia 62

Lydia 17 18 12 15 — 62

Grace 24 23 16 17 — 80

GRACE — Blake Hendricks, 4; Verlo Levels, 19; Trevor Gunter, 14; Blake Johnson, 4; Phillip McKinney, 5; Andrew Melhart, 20; Call Florence, 3; Zac Roark, 3; Thomas Nance, 4; Tanner Starr, 4.

THREE POINT GOALS — GC: Hendricks, Levels, Melhart (6), Florence, Roark.

RECORDS — Grace 17-15.

NEXT UP — Grace vs. Lubbock Trinity Christian, 2:30 p.m. today.