Sports > Schools
Slam Dunc-anvill-ed: West's unbeaten run ends at the hands of defending champs
Despite winning four games at the Collin County Roundball Classic, finishing second in the tournament and bringing home a decent-sized trophy, the Plano West girls basketball team was in no mood for celebrating Saturday.
"The bus was pretty quiet on the way home," said Don Patterson, West head coach. "The girls felt they could play with that group and felt they should've played better."
The group in question is Duncanville, which beat West on Saturday, 61-55.
The Pantherettes lost only one game last year en route to the Class 5A State Championship, with that loss coming against the Lady Wolves in the finals of the Roundball Classic. Duncanville and West were both undefeated when they met again in the championship Saturday with the former ranked No. 1 in the state and the latter No. 3.
It was West's 0 that would go.
"We started the game shooting pretty well," Patterson said. "We hit some threes, but those can go away."
West trailed at the break, 36-33, before a huge third quarter from Duncanville turned that into a 50-38 deficit.
"We had a bad third quarter, but a lot of that had to do with their defense," Patterson said. "Duncanville is as good as they were last year, maybe even a little better."
At the forefront of the Duncanville surge was the trio of guards Ariel Atkins, Tasia Foman and Kiara Perry, all of whom scored 15 points. The Pantherettes also held a distinctive advantage on the boards as their lead got as high as 15 points.
The Lady Wolves, which improved to a program-best 15-0 earlier in the day by defeating Frisco Liberty in the semifinals, weren't out of it yet though.
"Our kids did what they always do and that's continue to fight," Patterson said.
Behind 19 points from junior Tyara Warren-Cox, who Patterson called, "probably the team's most consistent offensive and defensive player to date," West pulled to within four in the final minute. Duncanville hit enough of its free throws down the stretch though to pick up a 61-55 victory.
Freshman Natalie Chou, who was named all-tournament, and senior Devri Owens each scored 11 points in the finals while senior Allison Stanley dropped in eight points and sophomore Sydney Skinner put up six.
Patterson stayed positive after the loss.
"I could see the girls were down so I told them, 'that team is No. 1 in the state for a reason and now you know how you match up with No. 1,'" he said. "I know the girls were disappointed, but I still think we can play with any team in the state; now, whether we win or not will come down to how we execute the game plan down the stretch."
With four weeks until district even starts, expect that message to continue in practice.
"I constantly tell the girls, 'you can always do better than what you think you can do,'" Patterson said.
West, now No. 4 in the state, could prove that to the Pantherettes soon enough as the Lady Wolves are in the Duncanville-hosted Sandra Meadows Tournament Dec. 27-29.