As Monday bi-district playoffs go, many girls basketball coaches favor them for several reasons.
First, there is better availability for neutral sites. Second, coaches have a better choice of officials. Third, when the season ended on Feb. 4, most coaches don’t want to go a full week between games. They wanted to shorten the timeframe to limit the rust.
Colleyville Heritage coach Dianna Sager is one of those who likes the Monday game. The Lady Panthers (21-12, 10-4 in District 6-5A) opened the postseason on Monday against Flower Mound (18-11) at Carroll High School. Had the Lady Panthers won, they would have advanced to the area round to play the winner of Killeen Ellison-South Grand Prairie.
The game was played after the press deadline; see www.dfwvarsity.com for results.
Moving past the bi-district round has been a problem for this program recently. The Lady Panthers had been one and done in the previous two appearances. Matchups can always play a part in these games.
Flower Mound had its own challenge in sophomore 6-3 post Lauren Cox. Cox is a problem averaging 18.7 points and 14.2 rebounds. A burden was going to be placed on Colleyville Heritage senior 6-2 post Artavia Ford to match the energy.
“We played some kids in Houston who were kind of like that size,” Sager said. “It was going to be a battled for Artavia and we were doing to try and do some things to help. Lauren is really talented. She has good range and a hook shot.”
Colleyville Heritage wrapped up the third seed with an 80-25 victory over Irving Nimitz in the regular season finale. Victoria Bratcher led the way with 19 points. She followed that from a 16-point performance against Irving.
“The mindset we have, especially with the likes of Victoria and Salina [Apodaca], is that they were not ready to turn in their uniform,” Sager said. “The thing we had to challenge them was to find something that would leave a mark on their careers.
“We have a lot of girls on this roster who haven’t won a playoff game in three years. So the challenge is to find a way to win that playoff game and to stay focused and prepare the best way we can.”
The Feb. 3 realignment grouped Colleyville Heritage into what should be a better district for basketball. The new District 7-6A is Colleyville Heritage, Carroll, Euless Trinity, Hurst L.D. Bell, Richland and Haltom.
“I was very surprised they put Trinity and Southlake in the same football district,” Sager said. “That’s never happened. But I think it will be a solid basketball district for us with Carroll, Trinity and Bell. Coppell is coming up and Richland is a good program.”
Grapevine wraps season
The Lady Mustangs didn’t make the playoffs. However, they got the finish on Feb. 4 the way coach Steve Ganninger hoped.
Grapevine (15-12, 7-7 in 6-5A) knocked off Euless Trinity, 58-56. Officially, Grapevine finished one game behind Euless Trinity for the fourth playoff spot. Trinity was 8-6. The Lady Mustangs used a 21-15 effort in the fourth quarter to pull off the victory.
The big three of Mandi Routon, Nicole Taake and Michelle Kotlik led the way. The three combined for 40 points. Taake had 15, while Kotlik added 13 and Routon 12.