Wildcats after their area championship game

Arlington Martin defeated Lake Highlands 66-62 Tuesday in a contest for the right to play in basketball’s regional tournament. The teams traded the lead all night, and Martin scored four points in the final 35 seconds to clinch the game.

Martin will play El Paso Americas Friday at 8 p.m. at Fort Worth’s Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center.

The finish between Lake Highlands, ranked 8th in the state by the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches, and Martin, ranked 17th, wasn’t the only stunner last night. McKinnney beat Richardson, ranked second in the country by ESPN. A layup in the final two seconds earned McKinney the 54-52 victory.

Lake Highlands’ success was thrilling for coaches, players and the community, but it also bodes well for the future. Junior Samson Aletan had 12 points and five blocks in last night’s game and will surely be a force his senior year. ESPN says Tre Johnson is the third-best sophomore in the country.

Thank you, Wildcats, for an amazing season.