Memorial, Nederland battling for final playoff spot as season closes

Published 12:28 am Friday, January 28, 2022

With just over a week left in the regular season, two local basketball teams are battling for the fourth and final playoff spot in District 21-5A.

Memorial currently sits in fourth place with Nederland behind them in fifth. The Bulldogs’ win over Port Neches-Groves Tuesday knocked the Indians down to sixth place, but the Bulldogs will need some help to make a run at the postseason.

Memorial is coming off a 54-33 loss to Barbers Hill this week, but hosts an 0-26 Galena Park today.

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Memorial will finish out the season with Crosby and PNG. Crosby, Barbers Hill and Beaumont United are in a three-way tie for first place.

“We’ve been in this position before, but we didn’t follow through,” Memorial Head Coach Kevin Henry said of his players controlling their own destiny. “We have to take care of our business. If we do what we are supposed to do, we will get an extension.”

While two of the three teams remaining on the Titans’ schedule have worse records, Henry said his team does not have the luxury of being able to lose focus.

“We are going approach these games like we have done the rest of the season with one game at a time,” he said. “We are not looking past anyone. One game at a time and one play at a time. We have to win every quarter.”

Henry said Charnel Jones, Amanti Edwards and Gabrielle Roy have led the team down the backstretch.

“(Jones) is starting to find her range,” Henry said. “She is starting to hit shots from the perimeter. She has made, at least, two 3-pointers in the past few games. Edwards has been dominating the boards for us. Roy has been giving us a lot of positive buckets. I want to say she has been in double figures the past three or four games.”

Nederland is on the outside looking in and will need some teams to upset the Titans to have a chance to make the playoffs. The Bulldogs do not play Friday and finish their season against Beaumont United, Barbers Hill and Galena Park.

“We just want to play hard,” Nederland Head Coach Jody Walker said. “Each game, we have something to prove. We have a big week next week. We have the top two teams in our district. If we can go out and play, we are good enough to beat them. Some might call me crazy, but I know we can do it.”

PNG fell 45-35 to the Bulldogs Tuesday. PNG Head Coach Lance Robertson said he wants to see his team continue to improve .

The Indians close their season with games against Barbers Hill, Galena Park and Memorial.