Cardinals nip Bobcats, 38-37
By Caleb Adams
BRIDGE CITY — The Bridge City Cardinals edged out a 38-37 win against the Orangefield Bobcats Friday night in District 22-4A play at Cardinal Gym.
The game went down to the last ten seconds of the final quarter and the Cardinals (15-10, 5-4) were able to hang on to the slim margin they had.
The Cardinals, who have clinched a playoff berth, are currently in a third-place tie with West Orange-Stark with one game remaining. Bridge City goes to top-ranked Silsbee Tuesday while WO-S visits second-place LC-M.
It was Senior Night in Bridge City and two of the four seniors showed up for the Cardinals in a big way. Dane Piper and Brandon Vela combined to score 30 of the 38 points for Bridge City. Piper had 18 points which were all in the paint, and had six rebounds. Vela had 12 points and was a part of nearly every other point by creating the play or assisting on it.
Orangefield (9-17, 1-8) had the goal of ruining Bridge City’s senior night with a win, but came up one point short. The Bobcat’s Wesley Frillou only scored three’s throughout the game making six for 18 points, including one absurdly long shot from NBA three-point range.
The game was close from the first minute of the game to the last, and the first quarter set that tone with both teams focused on their defense. Each offense had to pass the ball multiple times to even find a shot to take, but if that wasn’t hard enough the shooter always had someone in their face to contest the shot. The Cardinals would find a little more success in the first quarter going up early 10-7 heading into the second quarter.
The second quarter was all Bobcats as they found their shot with Caleb Kress and Frillou making a few key shots to take the lead late into the quarter. The Cardinals would have to go into the locker room and find a way to create shots on the offensive side. The Bobcats were up at the end of the first half 20-18.
The Cardinals found those adjustments needed, but it wasn’t on offense, the adjustments came through strong on the defensive side. The Bridge City defense held the Bobcats scoreless until Frillou hit a three very late into the quarter. That three was all the points Orangefield could find, as the Cards went into the fourth up 27-23.
During the fourth quarter the Bobcats would outscore the Cardinals with the help of Payton Lathrop and Frillou combining to hit four threes. As hard as they tried the Bobcats just couldn’t score enough to take over the lead. The Cards would hold the lead with the help of a long three from Vela late in the fourth.
The Bobcats will close out their regular season on the road at last-place Hamshire-Fannett Tuesday.