On Saturday, Temple College's Lady Leopards celebrated their sophomore players (Steve Lemmons, Te... On Saturday, Temple College's Lady Leopards celebrated their sophomore players (Steve Lemmons, Temple College)

By Tony Adams for Temple College

The changeover from winter sports to spring sports continues for Temple College Athletics. This week, the regular season concludes for basketball and the conference season roars into full schedules for softball and baseball.

The action will be confined to Wednesday and Saturday this week for the program.

  • On Wednesday, No. 14 Temple College Baseball will travel to Ranger College to open conference play. Game times at Ranger are scheduled for 12 p.m. and 3 p.m.
  • 6 Temple College Softball will start its second week of North Texas Junior College Athletic Conference (NTJCAC) play, as the Leopards host Ranger College in doubleheader action. The games are scheduled for 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
  • Temple College Women’s and Men’s basketball teams travel to McKinney to take on Collin County Community College, each game critical for conference tournament positioning.
  • The TC Women (ranked No. 19, 23-4 overall,10-4 in third place in NTJCAC) and CCCC (ranked No. 4, 26-2 overall, 13-2 NTJCAC tied for first place with MCC) tip off at 5 p.m.
  • Temple College Men (14-13, 5-7 in fifth place, ½ game behind Grayson for final playoff spot) will take on CCCC (23-6, 10-3, NTJCAC first place) at 7 p.m.
  • On Saturday, TC Baseball hosts Ranger College in the Leopards’ home conference opening doubleheader. Game times at the Danny Scott Athletic Complex are slated for 12 p.m. and 3 p.m.
  • TC Softball will travel to Ranger College for a conference doubleheader with the Rangers. Game times scheduled for 12 p.m. and 2 p.m.
  • Temple College Basketball will conclude the regular season at Weatherford College. The women’s game will be at 2 p.m. and the men’s game rounds out the schedule at 4 p.m.

Here is a recap of last week’s busy schedule in Temple College Athletics:

TC Women’s basketball drops heartbreaker to Hill

The Temple College Lady Leopards hosted the Hill College Rebels this past Saturday afternoon at the Danny Scott Athletics Complex.

Prior to the game, TC celebrated Sophomore Day. The program honored Evelyn Lorenzo, Peyton Overton, Tia Mitchell, Kyiah Hicks, Kira Bass, Camille Pritchard. Erika Suarez, Wilashia Burleson and Marta Sanchez for their contributions to the basketball program and to Temple College.

Lady Leopards guard Peyton Overton passes the ball. (Steve Lemmons, Temple College) Lady Leopards guard Peyton Overton passes the ball. (Steve Lemmons, Temple College)

The Lady Leopards erased a 15-point deficit over a span of 11 minutes to grab the lead. However, a late burst by the Rebels earned them a 100-92 win over TC.

After trading the lead back and forth early, Hill went on a 10-5 stretch to take a 21-14 advantage into the second period.

The Rebels extended their lead to 15 points, 39-24, with 6:25 remaining in the first half.

Temple began their climb back into the game, with Burleson, Pritchard, Lorenzo, Suarez and Mitchell battling to snap the deficit into the final six minutes of the half. The Rebels led at the half, 47-40.

TC began the second half on a 13-4 run, which landed them the lead, 53-51 with 5:48 left in the third quarter.

The lead was traded back and forth over the final five minutes of the period, with TC taking a three-point lead into the fourth, 67-64.

Hill outscored the Leopards in the fourth quarter, 36-25. However, TC was down four points with 59.4 seconds left, but could not get a pair of shots to fall, and Hill sank four free throws late.

Burleson led the Leopards with 30 points, 17 rebounds and five assists. Pritchard added 25 points, 12 rebounds, three assists and three steals. Lorenzo chipped in 14 points, and Mitchell poured in eight points off the bench.

TC Men’s Basketball drops tight contest to Hill

The Temple College Men’s Basketball program hosted the Hill College Rebels in the Leopards’ final home game of the season this past Saturday afternoon.

Temple College Head Basketball Coach Clifton Ellis celebrates with the sophomore members of the t... Temple College Head Basketball Coach Clifton Ellis celebrates with the sophomore members of the team (Steve Lemmons, Temple College)

TC celebrated Sophomore Day, as Elcid Smith, Theo Grant, Ja’Rayl Peoples, Desmond Green, Andrew Iyamah and Jacob Taitte were honored for their contributions to Temple College and the athletics program.

Temple College Leopards play Hill College on Saturday, March 2. (Steve Lemmons, Temple College) Temple College Leopards play Hill College on Saturday, March 2. (Steve Lemmons, Temple College)

Locked up in a tight game throughout, the Rebels’ 18-6 run over the final 5:33 lifted Hill over TC, 92-82.

The game featured multiple lead changes early, with Temple edging out to a one-point lead at the half, 35-34.

The seesaw battle continued through the second half, as neither team lead by more than four points going into the waning moments. The Leopards led 76-74 when Hill’s final run produced a 10-point margin at the end.

The Leopards were 23-of-28 from free-throw line, led by Henry Sanchez-Perez’s 21 points. Caleb Gaston added 14 points, Taitte chipped in 11, and Peoples and Camren Roper poured in 10 points each off the bench.

TC Baseball picks up series win at Midland College

Temple College Baseball had a four-game week last week as they started on Monday at Navarro College in Corsicana.

The Leopards were unable to hold on to a 7-3 advantage through the middle innings, and their late rally attempts fell short in a 9-8 loss to the Bulldogs.

Mason Ashlock and Trent Tucker each had three runs batted in, and Cole Tabor added two in a 13-hit attack.

The Leopards hit the road for a three-game series at Midland College.

In the series opener on Friday, the Leopards led 11-5 going into the bottom of the seventh before the Chaparrals added a run and scored seven times in the eighth inning to hold on for a 13-11 win over TC.

Cash Russell and Cole Tabor homered, Tabor and Andrew Ermis each added two RBI, and Wilson Woodcox belted three hits.

Mason Peters allowed two unearned runs on two hits in the start. The bullpen was unable to curtail the 14-hit attack by Midland. Andrew Taylor and Justin Rumfield homered for the Chaps.

The Leopards returned for a doubleheader Saturday. In the opener, Tabor homered in the seventh inning to help boost the Leopards over the Chaparrals, 15-7.

TC scored five runs in the top of the first, three more in the fifth, and seven in the seventh inning to put the game away.

The patient plate approach for the Leopards ended with TC drawing 15 walks, four hit-by-pitches and nine hits. Tabor and Ty Marthiljohni collected three runs batted in, Jake Weaver drew four walks, and Woodcox earned three bases on balls.

Garrett Baumann scattered seven hits over six innings for the win on the hill.

In the second game, Brayden Simmons had two hits and three Leopards had two RBI apiece as TC came from behind to defeat the Chaps, 7-4.

Zak Johnson, Tanner Jackson and Davis Luikhart combined to allowed four runs on eight hits, six walks and six strikeouts.

The bottom five spots in the lineup combined for six of TC’s seven hits.

The Leopards completed the week with a 14-5 record heading into NTJCAC play.

TC Softball earns series split against Grayson College

The No. 6 Temple College Softball team and No. 4 Grayson faced off in an early battle of ranked teams in NTJCAC play.

On Friday in Denison, the Vikings took advantage of six uncharacteristic TC errors in the field to earn a doubleheader sweep of the Lady Leopards by scores of 11-7 and 10-3.

In the first game, TC was in an 11-2 hole going into the fourth inning. The Lady Leopards picked up two runs in the fourth and three more in the sixth but pulled up four runs short.

Lily Garcia homered and drove home three runs, and Maveryck Lightfoot and Hannah Wiggins each added three hits.

Audrie Sayas picked up the loss in the circle for the Lady Leopards.

In the second game, TC jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning. However, the Vikings answered with four runs in the bottom of the frame and pressed forward for a seven-run win.

Bre’ Jackson and Kennan Nunamaker each had two hits, and Emily Delgado added two RBI.

Garcia’s double scored Jackson for the first run of the inning. Delgado’s two-run single scored Nunamaker and Garcia.

Hannah Calhoun took the loss in the circle for the Lady Leopards.

The series came to Temple on Saturday, as the Lady Leopards were able to claim a doubleheader sweep of the Vikings.

The scores of the twin-bill were 8-0 in five innings and 10-7.

In the opener, Haley Crawford tossed a five-hitter, struck out five, walked out and received run support in all five innings from the Leopards.

Lightfoot and Adelyn Beccera each homered, and Alyssa Budisalovich collected three hits to help power an 11-hit attack.

In the second game, Beccera and Delgado each homered, with Delgado driving home three runs and Becerra brought home two. Budisalovich and Wiggins each had two hits.

Four pitchers combined for the win. Delgado started, Calhoun, Sayas and Crawford all pitch inning relief.