CORINTH – Despite being on opposite sides of the District 6-5A boys basketball standings, Lake Dallas was determined to give conference leader Richland its best effort.
And for the game’s first three and a half minutes of Friday’s game, the Falcons just did that.
When Lake Dallas sophomore Xinjin Gomez buried a 3-pointer to give the Falcons a two-point lead with 4:26 left in the first quarter, the Falcons liked their chances of springing the upset. But, it was the final time that Lake Dallas led in the game.
Richland answered the fast start by Lake Dallas with a 16-0 run and never looked back, sending the Falcons to a 62-49 loss. Lake Dallas fell to 6-17 overall, 0-12 in conference play. Richland improved to 19-6, 10-2.
Prior to tip-off, Lake Dallas held a moment of silence to honor the memory of longtime Falcons assistant football and track coach Bill Cosper, who passed away Jan 30 at the age of 62. Cosper had nearly 26 years of teaching and coaching experience, including the last eight at Lake Dallas High School.
As for the game, Lake Dallas played more inspired than its previous encounter with Richland, a 74-39 win for the Royals on Jan. 18.
The Falcons got their first points of the game on a putback from senior Kenny Williams and a layup by junior Jordan Williams before Gomez buried a 3-pointer to put Lake Dallas on top 7-5. Jordan Williams led Lake Dallas with 12 points while Kenny Williams was right behind him, having finished with 11 points.
The tables soon turned in Richland’s favor – in a big way.
The Royals initiated several odd-man fastbreak attempts to gain an 18-7 lead at the end of the first quarter and then a 21-7 advantage after a 3-pointer just 38 seconds into the second quarter.
Kenny Williams ended Richland’s 16-0 run with a 3-pointer of his own with 5:55 left in the half, but the Falcons still trailed by double digits.
Despite the extended run by Richland, Lake Dallas didn’t give up. Jordan Williams banked a shot off the glass to trim the deficit to 10 points, although the Royals converted a 3-on-1 fast-break layup with eight seconds left in the second quarter to take a 28-16 lead.
Lake Dallas had a chance early in the third quarter to cut even further into that deficit, but missed a layup.
The rest of the third quarter belonged to Richland. The Royals fired away from behind the arc and buried five 3-pointers to take a commanding 48-26 lead.
Lake Dallas received a nice boost from Tyson Collier with six fourth-quarter points, but the closest that the Falcons were able to get within Richland was 13 points.
Lake Dallas will look to pick up its first district win of the season Tuesday against Denton, which will serve as the final home game of the season for the Falcons.