GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas -- Mansfield Timberview hero Cornelius Hudson received an uncomfortable-looking celebratory ride around Amos Turner Gymnasium on the shoulder of teammate Jonathan Tate.
But Hudson, a 6-foot-3 junior, was much too happy to complain.
His 3-pointer from the left wing with five seconds remaining propelled Mansfield Timberview to a 53-51 victory over Coppell in a Class 5A Region I area playoff Friday night at Grand Prairie High.
Timberview (21-14), the fourth seed from District 5-5A, advances to a regional quarterfinal against defending state champion Flower Mound Marcus, a 65-37 winner over Duncanville on Friday.
“I felt it was going in as soon as I let it go,’’ Hudson said. “I practice shooting that shot every day.’’
For a final OK to launch, Hudson said he heard teammate Brandon Pye “hollering my name.’’
Pye, Timberview’s leading scorer this season, was limited to six points by Coppell’s blanketing defense, 10 points under his average. But Hudson in the second half and junior guard Chris Owens in the first half more than picked up the slack, combining for four 3-pointers apiece.
Timberview trailed 51-50 after Coppell’s talented post Jett Raines converted a pair of free throws with 32 seconds remaining. With 20 seconds to go, Timberview coach Duane Gregory called a timeout to discuss last-shot strategy.
“We had four guys on the floor that I would have been comfortable taking the last shot and Cornelius was one of the four,’’ Gregory said.
Said Coppell coach Brad Chasteen: “It was a great shot. I would have settled for him taking that shot in that situation. The game was on the line and it was on the end of the floor where he is shooting into the crowd. We didn’t just give it to him. We had someone challenging him. Our thought was we didn’t want Pye to shoot it.’’
Coppell (25-9) used the final five seconds to get a good look at a potential 3-point winner of its own, but Martin Kalev’s attempt from the left corner was a little too strong off the back rim.
Hudson, scoreless in the first half, finished with 16 points. He credited an intermission pep talk from teammates for his turnaround.
“The whole team told me to keep shooting,’’ said Hudson. “I just love those guys. We’re all like brothers.’’
Owens, a 6-foot junior, scored 12 of his 15 points in the first half.
Coppell’s Raines, a 6-foot-8 senior, went 9-of-12 from the floor and led all scorers with 24 points and added nine rebounds.
Coppell went on a 11-point run to open a 39-30 lead five minutes into the second half, thanks to an 11-point quarter by 6-foot-7 senior Austin Mankin.
Hudson scored eight points in the final two minutes of the third quarter, including a long 3-pointer at the buzzer, to cut the Coppell lead to three points going into the final eight minutes.
There were five lead changes in the fourth quarter. After being out-rebounded 16-13 in the first three quarters, Timberview owned a 9-2 edge in the final period, leading to a pair of second-chance baskets.
“We had some rebounds go out of our hands,’’ Chasteen said.