Pantherettes headed to 3 peat after 80-57 win over Wagner

Senior+Keyana+Smith+fights+for+the+ball+against+a+San+Antonio+Wagner+defender+under+the+basket+in+the+Panterettes+80-57+win+in+the+State+Semi+Finals+game.+%28Leenolia+Robinson+photo%29

Senior Keyana Smith fights for the ball against a San Antonio Wagner defender under the basket in the Panterettes 80-57 win in the State Semi Finals game. (Leenolia Robinson photo)

Senior Keyana Smith fights for the ball against a San Antonio Wagner defender under the basket in the Panterettes 80-57 win in the State Semi Finals game. (Leenolia Robinson photo)
Senior Keyana Smith fights for the ball against a San Antonio Wagner defender under the basket in the Panterettes 80-57 win in the State Semi Finals game. (Leenolia Robinson photo)

After a sweeping performance in the Regional tournament with wins by 20 points or more in each game the Pantherettes felt pressure for the first time in the State Semi-finals against San Antonio Wagoner but came away with a 80-57.

“We kept our composer to the end. The harder they came at us the harder we came back,” senior Tiara Davenport said. “We had to step up our defense and keep our energy high to the end.”

The Pantherettes will take a 105 win streak into tonights matchup against Manvil for a shot at their third straight state title. Coach Cathy Self-Morgan said they will have to play their top game tonight against Manvil.

“They feel like they got cheated when we beat them in the Pasedena tournament earlier in the season,” Self-Morgan said. “So they will come out wanting to be the first to defeat us.”

Although the Pantherettes will enter tonight’s game with one of the longest winning streaks in a while, they say there is one goal going into the final game.

“You have to to be hungry every game,” senior Ariel Atkins said. “Every game you have to be willing to win. Any given day somebody from nowhere can beat you.”

Senior Ariel Atkins and Tasia Foman have been on the last two State Championship teams and are looking for the third tonight. Coach Self-Morgan admits they are a key to the winning.

“These girls are outstanding,” Self-Morgan said. “I just do not want it to end. I have them for one more game and I want to make the best of it.”

For Atkins and Foman it is about being together as high school players one more time.

“We are just enjoying the moments of being together in high school right now,” Foman said. “We want to play earlier tonight but we are just going to enjoy these moments and make the most of it.”