Bragging rights and the right to keep playing will be on the line Tuesday as John Tyler and Robert E. Lee square off on the hardwood in the second Rose City Rivalry.
The girls and boys basketball teams will meet in a doubleheader beginning at 5:30 p.m. with the Lady Lions and Lady Raiders at REL High School’s Varsity Gymnasium. The boys game is scheduled to follow.
The stakes couldn’t be higher for the girls game.
The Lady Lions (8-5 in District 11-6A) enter the regular-season finale tied for third place with Rockwall-Heath. A game back, currently in fifth place are the Lady Raiders (7-6).
Lee and JT are meeting while Heath is up against district-leading Mesquite Horn.
The Lady Raiders won the first meeting against JT, 60-56, while splitting their two games against Heath. The Lady Lions also split their games against Heath.
Here are the playoff scenarios:
John Tyler win and Heath loss: Lady Lions clinch third place and the No. 3 playoff seed. Heath is fourth and Lee is eliminated.
John Tyler win and Heath win: Lady Lions tie with Heath for third place in the standings, forcing a seeding playoff game to determine No. 3 and No. 4 seed for postseason. Lee is eliminated.
Robert E. Lee win and Heath loss: Lady Raiders, Lady Lions and Lady Hawks end in three-way tie for third place. The district bylaws say tiebreaker in three-way tie is a combination of record among the three teams. Lee split with Heath, and a win over JT would give the Lady Raiders a 3-1 record between them and vault REL into third place. The Lady Lions and Lady Hawks would then face each other in a district playoff to determine fourth place.
Robert E. Lee win and Heath win: Lady Hawks finish third and Lady Raiders finish fourth. John Tyler eliminated.
Lee is eliminated from playoff contention, which makes this game for the Red Raiders solely about bragging rights.
REL (1-10 in 11-6A) is mired in a nine-game losing streak. REL lost 68-56 to JT in the first meeting at the Lions Den.
John Tyler travels to REL Varsity Gymnasium with a 4-7 record in 11-6A. The Lions have dropped their last two games and need to win out in their final three league encounters to give themselves a chance to make the playoffs.
- Chris Parry