From Staff Reports
COLLEGE STATION – This year marks the 17th edition of the state tournament.
It all started back in 1998 with just one division, with Class 5A-under schools.
The tournament was split up into two separate division beginning in 2007.
Div. I consist of 6A-5A and Div. II is 4A-3A-2A and private schools.
Flash-forward to this season and Princeton will be part of the second division for the fourth time.
The Panthers punched their ticket Adidas sponsored event at Veterans Park Athletic Complex after winning their own state-qualifying tourney.
They beat Whitewright 46-20, Scurry-Rosser 41-18 and Greenville 45-19, all in pool action.
They followed that up with a 33-26 win over Argyle in the semifinals.
Celina took the other spot.
Later this week at College Station the Panthers will be part of Pool J, along with Needville, Brady and Grosebeck.
On Thursday in the first round the Panthers play at 2 p.m. (Needville), 4 p.m. (Grosebeck) and 6 p.m. (Brady).
They will play at least one game on Friday.
Also in the 64-team field are Navasota, Stephenville, White Oak, Yoakum, Clyde, Hitchcock, La Grange, Pilot Point, Cameron, Canton, Eastland, La Marque, Ballinger, Boerne, Melissa, Houston Worthing, Gatesville, Hamshire-Fannett, Pittsburg, Van Hord, Goliad, Krum, Lorena, Sweetwater, Crane Kountze, McGregor, Springtown, Childress, Decatur, Falls City, Fredricksburg, China Spring, Crockett, Hidalgo, Levelland, Argyle, Burnett, Diboll, Hawley, Bandera, Gilmer, Snyder, West, Albany, Chapel Hill, Giddings, Houston Lutheran South, Andrews, Bay City, Brock, Lexington, Brownwood, Carthage, La Feria, Taylor, Abilene Wylie, Celina, East Bernard and Wimberley.
Last year, Princeton ended up 2-2 at College Station.
In Pool J action, they went 2-1 for second place, just behind 3-0 Big Spring.
Thorndale finished 1-2 and La Villa was dead last with a 0-3 mark.
The Panthers blew out Thorndale 47-19 and La Villa 41-14, and fell 34-13 to Big Spring.
After finishing in the top two, they moved on to compete in the championship bracket.
Princeton came up just short in a 28-25 loss to Pool B winner Eastland during the opening contest.
Defending titleholder Graham pulled out a 47-44 victory in the champions bracket.
Graham made it to the finale after beating Houston Kinkaid 47-41, Navasota 46-40, Episcopal 56-36 and Kaufman 24-8, all in bracket action.
Over in the consolation bracket, Robinson knocked off Boerne 39-38.
Prior to that Robinson won over Levelland 42-41, Dublin 46-42, Rice 39-14 and West 32-28.