Dobie's Royce Hunter drives past Humble's Kevin Dawson to score on a layup.
Autumn’s first chill coincided with a thermometer plunge for Dobie shooters on Friday night as the Longhorns’ boys team took a 71-53 tumble at the hands of Humble in the Division 2 Gold semifinals of the McDonald’s Texas Invitational Basketball Tournament.
The Longhorns, looking to become the first Pasadena ISD team ever to advance to a Gold Bracket championship game, came into the Phillips Field House contest with a 3-0 tournament record that included a 71-64 victory over Mansfield Summit earlier in the day.
Instead of making history, Dobie only duplicated its Texas Invitational performance from 2015, when the Longhorns won three straight before losing to Flower Mound.
Meanwhile, fresh contenders emerged on the boys’ side in Division 1 with Spring Westfield and Allen advancing to the championship game on Saturday at 7 p.m. at Phillips.
Westfield earned a title shot with a 57-38 semifinals rout of Flower Mound. Allen moved on with a 77-59 victory over Pearland.
The Oilers staged the day’s biggest upset when they put away defending Class 5A state champion Lancaster, 75-70, in a quarter-finals game that went into overtime.
Last year Lancaster lost to Atascocita in the Texas Invitational championship game. On Thursday, Atascocita took a loss in pool play and did not qualify for the Gold Bracket.
Neither Westfield nor Allen has ever played in Texas Invitational title game.
The projected storyline held steady on the girls’ side, where pool play concluded on Friday. Defending Class 6A champion Duncanville emerged with a 3-0 record with victory margins of 48, 33 and 42 points.
Duncanville will bid for its fifth Texas Invitational title in six years today when the Pantherettes take on Cy-Ranch in semifinal action. Mansfield Summit will play Clear Springs in the other semifinal contest with the winners meeting in the championship game at 3 p.m. at Phillips.
For other Pasadena ISD teams, results on Friday were mixed:
- The boys teams from South Houston and Memorial will meet on Saturday for the D-2 Bronze title after each won twice on Friday. Game time is 1:30 p.m. at the Rayburn High gym.
- The boys teams from Pasadena (competing in the Silver Bracket) and Rayburn (competing in Bronze) lost twice on Friday to fall into consolation play.
- Pasadena ISD girls teams finished pool play with a combined 4-11 record. Winners on Friday were Dobie and Rayburn. Memorial, South Houston and Pasadena lost their pool play finales.
Against Humble, the Longhorns got another high-scoring performance from guard Royce Hunter, who scored 24 points. Against Summit, Hunter scored 20. The Dobie senior now has 113 points in his four Texas Invitational games.
Dobie's problem in the nightcap was a 30.2 percent shooting clip. The Longhorns took 14 3-pointers and made only two. Hunter was the only Dobie player to hit double figures.
Humble led 42-34 at the half and slowly began to put the game away in the fourth quarter. With 3:57 left in the contest, Humble’s Kendrick Gathe hit a layup and converted a free throw for a 61-46 advantage for the Wildcats.
Humble guard Kevin Dawson led all scorers with 30 points.
Against Summit, the Longhorns stumbled out of the gate. Hunter tallied only six points in the first half. Summit, meanwhile, stormed to a 9-0 lead, stunning spectators at the Dobie gym.
The Longhorns, however, scored 13 straight points to take the lead. Dobie led 39-33 at halftime with the help of a 3-point shot by Jeremy Williams with a minute left.
Summit got as close as two points late in the fourth quarter. But Hunter scored five points in the final 76 seconds to end the drama.
Williams finished with 15 points, 12 coming in the first half. D.J. Garrett chipped in 13.
On Saturday, Dobie will take on Fort Bend Austin for third place in D-2 Gold. Tip-off is set for 1:30 p.m. at the South Houston High Gym.
Dobie's Joshua Cooper (2) outmuscles the Humble defense to collect a pair of rebounds.
Dobie's Dejean Jolivette drives inside against Humble.
Humble's Isaiah Longino (left) swats away a push shot by Dobie's Hunter; (right) the Longhorns' Jeremy Davis (44) has the right idea, but his attempted dunk misses the mark.
Dobie's Jeremy Williams looks around on a fast-break opportunity against Mansfield Summit.
Hunter scores on a layup during first-half action against Summit.