It’s on to the third round for the EHS basketball girls, who led most of the way Friday against Laredo Alexander at Roma, recorded a 56-44 triumph, and will now prepare for Laredo United South. Julissah Santa Maria led the way with 18 points and five steals while Larissa Martinez grabbed nine boards. EHS rumbled to 36 free throw attempts and Bri Sanchez hauled in 16 rebounds.

Now 36-3, the Lady Bobcats face a Lady Panther that has beaten La Joya and Harlingen so far in the playoffs, one that has an average overall record but appears to be peaking at the correct juncture. The match will be played Tuesday night in Zapata.

The anticipated bout with the Lady Cards – a reprisal of last year’s third-round battle – did not materialize after United South pulled the low-scoring upset Friday, 41-38. U South and the Lady ‘Cats have actually met before, and EHS won, 48-43 on Nov. 26. The Lady Panthers did then beat SA Harlan, one of three foes to best EHS this season, so this game will be more interesting than first blush admits.

In bi-district Tuesday the Lady ‘Cats had destroyed Hanna, 65-37, opening up an 18-0 lead and never trailing. They hit eight bombs – including two by sophomore Genesis Hall – and recorded 10 blocks, three from Bri Sanchez and four by soph Martinez.

Earlier in the week, Vela bowed out in bi-district, losing 48-37 to Los Fresnos on the road. The Lady SaberCats finished 18-16 after a strong start in the first period gave way to a 14-1 Los Fresnos run in the second. Vela returns its excellent backcourt next season along with the bulk of the frontcourt, minus senior Kameryn Casares, and should be once again among the favorites to make the grade.

SOFTBALL BEGINS

Casares now returns to her first love, softball, where her Vela teammates started the season off with a 17-0 victory against Valley View. The opener last week marked the first official re-sighting of the Blonde Bomber, Katy Truitt. After a year away in the Coastal Bend, the strapping outfielder – a University of North Texas commit – announced herself well against Valley View by homering, smacking a pair of doubles, and driving home four runs in the rout. Monie Montilla, the sweet-swinging lefty, was 3 for 4 with two doubles.

North also got going last week, smashing McAllen 15-0 thanks to a mammoth performance from team leader Annabel Segoviano, who drove in six and clouted a home run. The Lady Cougars hammered out 23 hits with three girls going 3 for 3. Infielder Kaylee O’Bryan, outfielder Mara Guerra, and freshman Liana Urbano were all perfect at the plate.

North won its first three and then ran into trouble toward the end of the Mission Tournament, dropping decisions to strong sub-5A clubs Zapata and Lyford.

LADY SABES WIN SAMS RELAYS

Buoyed by a clean sweep in the relays, the Lady SaberCats came out on top over foes such as Los Fresnos and Harlingen at the Sams Relays in Brownsville Saturday. Dayanne Ramos took first in the long jump, Monica Garza ruled the 200, and Debhani Ednie won gold in the 300-meter hurdles to cap a successful day of running and jumping. For the boys at Brownsville, Justin Vega breezed to the title in the 200 and Mario Salas capped the gold in the 1600 and got second in the 3200. The Vela boys finished second as a team.