Girls’ basketball continues district dominance against LT

Aggressiveness guides Chaps to 58-27 win over Cavaliers, 10-0 district record
Mia Fillpot
Guard senior Gianna Angiolet shoots a 3-pointer in the Chaps’ 58-27 win over Lake Travis Tuesday.

It’s easy for coaches and players to get caught up in the spectacle of a rivalry game. Each time that two district foes tip off, there’s far more than just a win on the line. 

However, coming into their Tuesday night matchup with cross-town rival Lake Travis, head coach Vickie Benson and the varsity girls’ basketball team focused on eliminating the emotion of the rivalry rather than embracing it. Benson and the Chaps had a much bigger prize on their minds – their first district title since 2020. 

“We can’t make this a rivalry,” Benson told KVUE pregame. “Let’s just take care of business.” 

The Chaps did just that. Aggressiveness on both sides of the ball led Westlake (20-4, 10-0 District 26-6A) to a dominant 58-27 win over Lake Travis (21-9, 8-3 26-6A) at Al Bennett Court Tuesday night. 

The victory completed their season sweep of Lake Travis, as the Chaps won the rivals’ first meeting 65-36 in early December. The two wins helped the Chaps maintain their half-game lead atop the district standings with just six games remaining. 

“[The win] means a lot,” guard senior Gianna Angiolet said. “The past couple years, it’s really been a battle. We’ve gone one-and-one, or they’ve beat us twice. We’ve really put in a lot of work this season.” 

The Chaps’ effort was evident from the opening tip-off. got off to a solid start, taking an early 7-2 lead off baskets from forward senior Kennedy Cannon and Angiolet, as well as assertive play defensively. Both teams exchanged 3-pointers toward the end of the quarter, but the Chaps led 16-5 after one. 

Forward senior Kennedy Cannon looks for a pass during the third period of their Jan. 16 rivalry game against The Lake Travis Cavaliers. The Chaps won 58-27. (Mia Fillpot)

The intensity was on full display in the second quarter. The Chaps continued to be pests on the defensive end, intercepting passes and diving for loose balls to set up fast break opportunities.

The Chaps grabbed nine steals in the second quarter alone, and replicated the vigorous effort on the offensive glass. Several hustle rebounds set up second-chance points for the Chaps, and they took advantage. Angiolet also began to heat up from beyond the arc, knocking down four 3-pointers en route to 18 first-half points. The Chaps led 35-9 at the half. 

The Chaps came out of halftime firing on all cylinders, turning Cavalier turnovers into fast break buckets on the other end. Forward sophomore Tamia King scored 10 straight points after the break, but Lake Travis answered with eight quick points by guard senior Claire Kolkhorst. The Chaps stretched their lead to 30 points midway through the third quarter, and led 48-21 heading into the fourth.

With a win practically secured, the Chaps continued their defensive efforts down the stretch, and tacked on a few additional free throws and close baskets to round out the game. Westlake stayed strong from start to finish, winning 58-27. Angiolet led the way for the Chaps with 26 points, and King complemented the effort with 12 points. 

The Chaps seemed to entirely eliminate the typical, grueling nature of the rivalry, and simply dominated the Cavaliers from tip-off to the final buzzer. 

“We know that every time we play [Lake Travis] it’s super mental,” Angiolet said. “It challenges us, and we hope to bring that strong mentality into the playoffs.”

The Chaps will continue their road to a district title, as well as their ultimate goal of a state championship as they take on Del Valle at Tawni Angel Court at 7 p.m. Friday.

Forward sophomore Tamia King scores a layup in the Chaps’ win of their home rivalry game against The Lake Travis Cavaliers Jan. 16. The Chaps won 58-27. (Mia Fillpot)
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