Northeast Tarrant

Lady Dragons seek focus in quest for district title

Former Southlake Carroll point guard Kennedy Leonard (14)
Former Southlake Carroll point guard Kennedy Leonard (14) Star-Telegram Archive

For Carroll girls basketball, a “random” week has passed. Following the Jan. 27 bye, the Lady Dragons (21-6, 9-0 in District 7-6A) played a really odd game at Coppell last Friday.

Carroll led 24-6 at the half. But somewhere things got off track in the second half. While Carroll never was threatened, the Lady Dragons were not in sync in the second half in their 47-33 victory. Carroll has already clinched a playoff spot and is looking for the district championship.

“We quit rebounding, there were some weird calls, we played too fast and there was just not a flow to the game,” head coach Teri Morrison said. “But with games like this, it’s something we can learn from as we move on.”

Perhaps the second half could have been attributed to Carroll’s arch rival wanting to prove a point. After all, the Lady Cowboys had won only one district game and had nothing to lose.

However, the final stretch of the season should get this team’s attention. Following Tuesday’s home game against Richland, Carroll plays at Euless Trinity. The Feb. 10 matchup is with Colleyville Heritage.

“The hardest part about this stretch against our two toughest opponents is that we’re going to have to maintain our energy,” Morrison said. “But I think the game against Richland was going to be good for our patience, since they like to slow the tempo down and put things into the half court. We’re just going to have to continue to play and adjust to different styles.”

Finding the physicality

When the season began, Morrison said she was going to have a different type of team. Rather than play 94 feet, the Lady Dragons were going to be more post oriented with four players standing at 6-0 or taller.

It hasn’t exactly turned out that way with two of those players not seeing much playing time. Senior Madison Drescher is finally now finding her game after dealing with a severe ankle injury. And 5-10 Juls Grubbs was lost for the season with a torn ACL.

Still, there’s enough size for this Carroll team to be able to be physical with anyone. It just hasn’t looked like it at times. Morrison played a rugged non-district schedule and has strong district opponents in Trinity and Colleyville Heritage, which feature physical play on the block.

Although Carroll won the first meeting with both, there were signs of concern. In the first Trinity matchup, there were at least two sequences where the Lady Trojans had third-and-fourth opportunities.

“That’s the area where haven’t matched the way we’ve wanted it to,” Morrison said. “We are continuing to work on that. We do the same thing every day in practice. Repetition will equal success.”

Trinity, Round 2

Had the Lady Dragons defeated Richland and Trinity knocked off Hurst L.D. Bell, Friday’s game would be a battle for the district championship at 6:30 p.m. in Euless. The Lady Trojans (23-4, 8-1) trailed Carroll by one game and feature talented sophomore forward Trinity Oliver.

“We always preach that if we get the work done and get our scouting plan and defensive plan, then all we have to do is go out and do what we have to do,” Morrison said. “We know it’s a great test. But this program has faced a lot of great tests.”