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Lady Knights lose play-in heartbreaker
Submitted by Shane McOwen on Wed, 02/15/2017 - 12:00am
Westview loses early 4th-quarter lead to Desert Mountain
Westview’s girls basketball team came up just short in its 6A playoff play-in game Feb. 9, ending its season at the hands of Scottsdale Desert Mountain, 47-43.
Desert Mountain held off the Lady Knights’ comeback attempt to earn a spot in Round 1 of the 6A state playoffs, which began Tuesday.
The Lady Knights took a while to warm up to the game, but fought back to make it close in the second half, Westview coach Lisa Contreras said.
“We started off kind of slow,” she said. “We struggled to score a little bit … In the second half, we closed the gap and even gained the lead going into the fourth quarter. It kind of went back and forth for a while and they ended up taking the lead, and time just ran out.”
Westview was also without one of its key players for much of the first half, Contreras said.
“Jimya [Chambers] got hurt and missed a lot of the first half,” she said. “She was able to come back in the second half.”
Desert Mountain shared the wealth when it came to scoring. Junior Raya Craig led the Lady Wolves with 15 points on 50 percent shooting. Junior Abby Young scored 10 points, and senior Elise Spivey and sophomore Kelsea Hurley each added nine.
Contreras said she was proud of her team’s accomplishments this season. The Lady Knights went 15-13 in all competitions, and played in the Nike Tournament of Champions in December.
“I think the group we had did really well,” Contreras said. “We had no issues. The girls got along really well. There was a lot of learning we needed to do, and that just takes time. By the end of the season, I saw growth in all of the players as a whole.”
Contreras said after seeing how much the team improved over the course of the season, it will have to come into next season with a stronger base if it wants to make a push deep into the playoffs.
“[This] just tells me we need to put in more work in the offseason to develop our players and get them ready for next year,” she said.
Westview will lose seven seniors from this season’s playoff squad, including top scorers Sierra Gallego, Alexandra Cano and Kennedy Cuspard. The Lady Knights will return three starters to next year’s team.
Shane McOwen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @ShaneMcOwen.
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