Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Skyline avenges state finals loss to Lincoln, wins DISD Coca-Cola girls final
A Dallas ISD/Coca-Cola Invitational girls final rematch with Lincoln has been on the mind of Skyline’s Dai’Ja Thomas for 12 months.
Thomas and Skyline took advantage of a second chance, holding off a late Lincoln rally for a 42-40 victory Saturday night at Davis Field House.
“Losing to Lincoln in the finals last year was a terrible feeling,” said Thomas, a freshman in 2011.
“It is something our whole team has been thinking about.”
Thomas scored 13 points and was named the tournament MVP.
Lincoln defeated Skyline in the 2011 final, 66-60. With the tournament crown comes the unofficial title of girls basketball champion of Dallas ISD.
“My kids played great,” Skyline coach Cassandra McCurdy said. “They were definitely ready to play. It was a good game for girls basketball in Dallas.”
Skyline never trailed, but Lincoln turned up the defensive pressure to rally from a 10-point halftime deficit and make a game of it in the final minutes.
A running 12-foot bid by Lincoln’s Alisha Washington to send the game into overtime bounced harmlessly off the back rim at the buzzer. Skyline (17-5) was finally able to celebrate.
Skyline missed eight free throws in the fourth quarter.
Lincoln (21-4), No. 3 in the Class 4A state rankings, was led by Kelsey Criner’s 14 points. Washington finished with 11.
“Lincoln’s been beating us the last three years,” Thomas said. “Our plan was to play together, work hard and come out with a win.”
Irving MacArthur 54, Highland Park 42: Tory Jacobs scored a game-high 18 points to lead Irving MacArthur (19-5) to a victory over Highland Park (15-5) in the third-place game.
Jacobs is the only returning starter from last season’s Class 5A regional finalist team.
Highland Park struggled at the free throw line, missing 15 of 35 attempts. Courtney Klingaman led Highland Park with 11 points.
In the consolation final, Alexus Bertrand scored 30 points in West Mesquite’s 55-52 win over Wilmer-Hutchins.