LUFKIN — Life on the road is never easy in Region XIV, but it is especially sweet when you can sweep.
Tyler Junior College did just that in a basketball doubleheader on Wednesday at Shands Gym on the Angelina College campus.
Trent Washington hit two huge 3-pointers down the stretch and the Apaches played shutdown defense in the final minutes as TJC won the men’s game, 62-57.
In the women’s contest, Shawnee Johnson drained a 3-pointer with a little over a minute to play and the Apache Ladies played defense down the stretch to register a 66-64 win over the Lady Road Runners.
Both TJC teams will be in action on Saturday against Jacksonville College at Wagstaff Gymnasium. The women begin at 2 p.m., followed by the men at 4 p.m.
Angelina travels to Paris the same day. Games are also at 2 and 4 p.m.
It appeared the Apaches would roll to an easy win, but Angelina fought back and took a 51-50 lead with 3:29 showing on two free throws by LaDerrien Jackson. But TJC then stepped up as Washington and Jaron Johnson helped their team outscore the Roadrunners 12-6 in the final minutes to secure the win.
“We made the extra pass and Jaron and Trent came up with some big shots when we needed them,” said TJC coach Mike Marquis, whose club improved to 11-6 overall and 4-4 in league play. “We played some great defense down the stretch.”
Washington, a 5-8 freshman from Waterloo, Iowa, was the only Apache in double figures as he hit for 14 points. TJC did use balanced scoring as Johnson and Hershey Robinson each hit for nine points, while Ta’Jon Welcome and Alton Tanner added eight points apiece. Chris Coleman had eight points and was a monster on the boards with 12 boards.
“We didn’t panic when they got the lead,” Washington said. “We just made the extra pass and my teammates trusted me to take the shots.”
Johnson also added nine rebounds.
Angelina (8-11, 0-8) was paced by Michael Myers and Frank Snow with 15 points apiece.
After AC took the 51-50 lead, Johnson hit both ends of a 1-and-1 with 3:18 to go and Washington drained a 3-pointer as TJC was up 55-51 with 2:09 to go. Johnson then followed with a baseline jumper at the 1:48 mark for a TJC lead of 57-51. AC pulled within 57-53 on two free throws by Snow, but once again Washington had the answer for a 60-53 lead that basically iced the game.
For the contest, TJC made 8 of 24 3-point attempts.
The Apaches claimed a 29-25 halftime lead despite Johnson sitting for a majority of the half and the club being held scoreless for 7:29. Johnson picked up his second foul at 16:49 and went to the bench. After Washington’s 3-pointer at 16:10, TJC did not score again until Alton Tanner’s two free throws with 8:41 left in the first half.
Ericka House led the Apache Ladies with 16 points, while Johnson added 13. Markisha Hawkins and Keaira Arion were next with 9 points each, while Ashley Benjamin and Cecilia Okoye hit 8 and 7 points, respectively.
Hawkins had 11 rebounds and Okoye had 10 boards and three blocks. Kirbi Clark, who was 4 for 4 at the free throw line in the second half, had three blocks as well.
“This is always a tough place to play,” said TJC coach Trenia Jones, whose club improved to 15-5 overall and 6-2 in Region XIV. “Shawnee hit a big three and made a couple of other big shots. And we played some good defense when we needed to play well.”
Diamond Webb paced AC with 23 points (six 3-pointers) and teammate Brittany Jefferson had 17 points.
The game was tight throughout with the biggest lead only six points.
The free throw line was a key as the Apache Ladies hit 13 of 18 from the charity stripe, while the Lady Roadrunners (7-10, 5-4) were just 16 of 27.
When Johnson drained a baseline jumper with 6:18 to play to tie the game at 54-54, neither team had more than a two-point lead down the stretch.
The four free throws by Clark kept the Apache Ladies in the game and later Tyler took a 60-59 lead with 2:50 remaining on another bucket by Johnson. Just a few seconds later, Benjamin swiped a pass and went the length of the court for a layup and a 62-59 advantage.
But the Lady Roadrunners came back with back-to-back buckets from Webb and Carlisha Wyatt for a 63-62 lead with 1:28 on the clock.
The Apache Ladies worked the clock with Hawkins spotting Johnson on the right wing. She spotted up and then swished the trey for the TJC lead of 65-63. Jefferson hit one free throw to bring AC within 65-64 with 1:04 to go.
After an illegal screen by House, Angelina brought the ball up court. Okoye blocked Webb and got the rebound. But with 14 seconds left, Benjamin grabbed an offensive rebound only to be called out of bounds.
Webb then drove the lane again, but her shot came up short. Teammate Nia Bradford got the rebound, but she also missed and Hawkins got the rebound with just over five seconds showing.
Hawkins, who is committed to Kansas, drained one of two free throw attempts for the 66-64 lead. Angelina brought the ball up court, but Wyatt’s 3-point attempt was short.
Region XIV Conference
Tyler 66, Angelina 64
TYLER — Ericka House, 16; Markisha Hawkins, 9; Amber Ames, 0; Carolina Lopez, 0; Ashley Benjamin, 8; Keaira Arion, 9; Tayshia Hunt, 0; Cecilia Okoye, 7; Shawnee Johnson, 13; Kirbi Clark, 4.
ANGELINA — Nia Bradford, 5; Diamond Webb, 23; Brittany Jefferson, 17; Breann McMillion, 2; Elizabeth Marrero, 4; Danielle McNealy, 0; Alexcia Harris, 0; T’Neisha Smith, 1; Carlette Wyatt, 4; Carlisha Wyat, 8.
THREE-POINT GOALS — TJC: House (2), Johnson. AC: Webb (6).
HALFTIME — Angelina 33-31.
RECORDS — Tyler 14-5 (6-2), Angelina 7-10 (5-4).
NEXT UP — Jacksonville at Tyler, 2 p.m. Saturday; Angelina at Paris, 2 p.m. Saturday.
Tyler 62, Angelina 57
TYLER — Jaron Johnson,9 ; Trevor Berkeley, 2; Trent Washington, 14; Tyler Brunson, 0; Hershey Robinson, 9; Kameron LaTouche, 0; Chris Coleman, 7; Ta’Jon Welcome, 8; Abdi Nur, 0; Winslo Barry, 0; Alton Tanner, 8; Daniel Edozie, 5.
ANGELINA — Jaylen Daniels, 8; Victor Mbachu, 2; Kabir West-Marshall, 0;Michael Myers, 15; LaDerrien Jackson, 12; Damon Sherman-Newsome, 12; Jamie Farrie, 1; Frank Snow, 15.
THREE-POINT GOALS — TJC: Washington (4), Robinson, Welcome, Tanner (2). AC: Daniels (2), Jackson (2).
HALFTIME — Tyler 29, Angelina 25.
RECORDS — Tyler 11-6 (4-4), Angelina 8-11 (0-8).
NEXT UP — Jacksonville at Tyler, 4 p.m. Saturday; Angelina at Paris, 4 p.m. Saturday.