The Cooldown: Week 22

Cover Photo courtesy of The Houston Chronicle.

Our first fully hoops-focused Cooldown is here at long last.

There’s plenty to catch up on with district play already half over and Houston has plenty of teams in the running for a state title. With that being said, lets just make a quick list of the currently ranked Houston area teams in each classification.

Ranked Houston area squads as of January 18

Class 6A has several ranked teams with (2) Atascocita leading the way. The undefeated Eagles are followed by (7) Elkins, (8) Shadow Creek, (9) Bellaire, (11) Summer Creek, (17) Westfield, (20) Pearland Dawson and (23) Clear Brook. Atascocita could have the best shot of the bunch at a state title and a case could be made that the undefeated Eagles should be No. 1 in the state over two-loss Waxahachie.

Class 5A features Beaumont United at No. 2, just outside our viewing area but the Wolves play several Houston area teams in district play. They’re followed by (3) Hightower, (5) Manvel, (19) Crosby, (20) Foster and (23) Katy Paetow. Just like the 6A standings, No. 2 United is undefeated while No. 1 Lancaster has five losses.

I’ll give you one guess at who tops class 4A. Yates is No. 2 in the state followed by (4) Stafford, (9) Huffman-Hargrave and (18) Silsbee. Yates is a mainstay and Stafford made a run at state last year as well before the cancellations.

That’s a solid picture for Houston’s serious state title contenders and who to watch out for in the playoffs. Of course, rankings change every week but those at the top tend to stay at the top.

Atascocita survives rally from Summer Creek

No doubt the best matchup in Houston (and perhaps the state) this weekend was Atascocita’s battle with Summer Creek.

We’re used to seeing great games from these two every year as each have been state ranked for much of the past few seasons, but things were unfortunately tamped down this time around. Each team was missing a few key players but that didn’t stop a great game from happening once again.

It was the Kaleb Stewart show early on as the outstanding senior had nine points in the first quarter to give Atascocita a narrow 17-13 lead. The Eagles increased on that lead with a 30-21 advantage at halftime.

Great defense from the Bulldogs held Atascocita to just eight points in the third quarter and the lead was whittled to four heading to the fourth. Fortunately for the Eagles, that was just enough to pick up a 54-52 win. A ranked win might be enough to propel Atascocita to No. 1 in the state in the newest rankings.

Tompkins rounds out big week with upset win

First it was Taylor, then it was Seven Lakes.

It couldn’t have been a better week for the Tompkins Falcons with upsets of the top two teams in 19-6A. The three wins dating back to the upset of Taylor on January 15 slides the Falcons into fourth with a district record of 5-4 for the time being. It was about time a few of these games started breaking Tompkins’ way. The Falcons have lost four of their five district games by five points or less.

Brian Knight and Luke Coughran led the charge in the Falcons 48-46 win against Seven Lakes. Knight finished with 15 points while Coughran racked up 14. Joel Oluokun chipped in 10 for the trio to account for nearly all the Tompkins scoring.

Tompkins finishes the season games against Mayde Creek, Cinco Ranch and Katy. The Falcons lost to Mayde Creek by four and Cinco Ranch by 11 the first time around while beating Katy by six. Katy is just half a game out of the playoffs at 4-4 and there could be a lot of movement from 3-6 in 19-6A in the final weeks.

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