Carlisle lost four games last week, but the Bison opened this week still with much to play for.
“We’ve still got a shot to get third on our side of our district going into the district tournament,” Bison coach Brad Slatton said Sunday. “If we finish well, we can definitely go in there and have a chance to compete and give ourselves a chance to advance to the regional.”
The Bison must win twice in the 3-2A District Tournament in two weeks in order to qualify for the regional.
“That’s been our theme here, and the kids seem to have bought in,” Slatton said. “Us, Hazen and Palestine-Wheatley are all competing for the 3-4-5 spot on our side of the bracket, so those games are going to be huge.”
Carlisle (5-17) lost its Senior Night game Monday to Hazen, 60-56. Caleb Jones led with 19 points. Kamryn Taylor added 10.
The Bison will get another shot at the Hornets for Hazen’s Senior Night on Thursday.
Last week, the Bison lost to Marvell, 85-37; Clarendon, 70-26; Jacksonville Lighthouse, 73-36; and Marvell again, 64-54.
“It was a tough stretch — four games in five days, all against pretty good teams,” Slatton said. “We were very competitive against Marvell on Friday. We just had one little bad stretch, and that did us in.
“But we competed really well, coming back from a team that had beaten us 48 on Monday to being ahead of them in the third quarter. Our kids competed. That showed me a little bit. They didn’t throw in the towel.”
Caleb Jones’ seven points led the Bison against Clarendon. Will Carter scored seven to lead against Lighthouse. Garnell Harris, who returned from injury against Lighthouse, led Carlisle Friday against Marvell with 16 points. Baylor Craig added 13 and Jones 12.
Slatton praised the recent play of several Bison.
“Caleb Jones has been a solid guy for us all year,” he said. “He competes every night, and he’s been a good leader for me. I’m proud of him. Garnell Harris was injured most of the year. Baylor Craig’s played well lately. And Braiden Jenkins is a spark for us. He brings it every game; you get the maximum effort from him. He’s a good kid and somebody that’s pretty positive.”
The Bison will finish the regular season at Concord with a non-conference game Friday, Feb. 9. The Class 1A Pirates were 22-3 to start the week.
The 3-2A District Tournament will begin Monday, Feb. 12, at Carlisle. The top four teams will move on to regional play.