GIRLS’ BASKETBALL

Dillard girls pummel Bartram Trail 62-25 to reach 5A title game

 

a1fernandez@MiamiHerald.com

Even after four years of stepping on to the Lakeland Center court, Dillard senior forward Kayla Wright still gets butterflies.

“I still do a little bit,” said Wright, a Tulsa University signee who has been a part of three state championship teams during her career. “But once the clock starts, it all goes away.”

Dillard’s girls’ basketball team may have felt a little bit of those nerves in the opening moments of Friday’s Class 5A state semifinal against St. Johns Bartram Trail.

It didn’t take long for them to squash that feeling and Bartram Trail in a 62-25 victory at The Lakeland Center.

Dillard (27-2) will attempt to win its fourth consecutive state championship 10 a.m. Saturday when it plays St. Petersburg Lakewood – the team the Panthers defeated in last year’s semifinals. Dillard also beat Bartram Trail in last year’s state championship game.

“I think [winning] is expected [in our program],” Wright said. “We have the talent to keep winning. The tradition is a big part of it.”

Dillard can become only the second Broward County team to win four consecutive state championships. A victory would also give the Panthers their county-best eighth state title and put them one behind Jacksonville Ribault, which won its ninth state title Thursday. Ribault also is the only team in state history to win five titles in a row.

Dillard coach Marcia Pinder, the winningest coach in state history, said she is keeping her team centered on the task at hand.

“We’re not chasing any records,” Pinder said. “We’re just worried about finishing.”

After playing to a 9-9 stalemate with 2:38 remaining in the first quarter, Dillard finished Bartram Trail with its physicality and sharp long-range shooting.

The Panthers used a 22-0 run that carried over into a second quarter in which they outscored the Bears 27-3 to take a 42-12 advantage at halftime.

Until Bartram Trail’s Sarah Ragland connected on a jumper with 7:03 left in the third quarter, Dillard had outscored Bartram Trail 37-3 over a span of 11 minutes and 35 seconds.

Wright’s layup 5:32 left in the third quarter forced a running clock for the remainder of the game.

Wright finished with a game-high 16 points, a game-high four steals, six rebounds and two blocks. Senior Ja’Coreyah Clayton found rhythm from outside making 3 of 5 three-point shots to finish with 13 points. Eva Myers also finished with nine points and four assists.

Dillard also got a chance to play several of its reserves once the game was in a running clock. The Panthers’ bench combined for 18 points led by Destiny Frazier’s six.

“I’m glad we got a chance to put that one behind us,” Pinder said. “We started a little shaky trying to get everyone involved and overplaying. Defensively, when you do it the right way good things happen I think at the beginning we were greedy and it just didn’t work. They settled down and started moving and trapping and finishing on the offensive end.”

DIL (27-2): Anderson 4, Clayton 13, Myers 9, Parson 2, Wright 16, Burns 4, Frazier 6, Green 4, Johnson 2, Wilks 2.

BT (20-8): Barlow 6, King 2, Ragland 13, Borngesser 2, Terrano 2. Half: DIL 42-12. Three-pointers: Clayton 3, Myers, Barlow. Rebounds: Ragland 13. Assists: Myers 4. Steals: Wright 4.

Read more Broward High Schools stories from the Miami Herald

  •  
Kristi Isabelle, a home schooled senior representing the South Florida HEAT Team, won the 300m hurdle during the Region 4-1A track meet on Thursday, Apr. 17, 2014, at Killian.

    Track and field

    Westminster’s James achieves rare sprint triple at regionals

    Westminster Academy’s Andrew James showed the Region 4-1A field at Dade Christian why he’s become one of the biggest box office draws in Florida.

  • Water Polo

    STA sweeps to district titles

    Anna Smith-Johnson scored three goals as St. Thomas Aquinas put a halt to Fort Lauderdale’s improbable turnaround season in Thursday’s District 10 title game at Fort Lauderdale.

  • Tennis | Class 1A state championships

    Young Sagemont boys’ team finishes third at state

    With a young team already facing an uphill battle to defend Sagemont’s Class 1A boys’ tennis title, coach Steven Browne brought a few extra passengers up to this week’s state tournament.

Get your Miami Heat Fan Gear!

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category