Once again, girls basketball team heads to state tournament


John Flatt

The girls basketball team walks down the bus lane during the school send-off for the state tournament.

The girls basketball team will play Mont Belvieu Barbers Hill at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Thursday, March 2, in the state semi-finals.

The team enters state play 22-3 and a district record of 10-1, ranking the team fourth in the state and 23rd nationally. The team is in the state tournament for the fourth straight season. Head coach Joe Lombard has won 18 state championships in his career.

“We’d always like to end up playing for a state championship, and so we’ve been very blessed to get to that point again this year,” Lombard said. “It’s going to take a great effort to beat two really great teams at the state tournament.”

We need to make sure we’re focused and treat it like any other game.

— Joe Lombard

Lombard said the team’s success is dependent on their ability to play as a unit.

“When we play out there, it should be five as one,” Lombard said. “We all have the same team goal, and that’s obviously to get a good shot every time on offense, not worry about who’s scoring. We need to make sure we’re focused and treat it like any other game, although it’s really not. We want to treat it like all the other games we’ve prepared for.”

Senior Codi Bradstreet said the comradery of the team has made her season enjoyable.

“It’s been an amazing experience, because I’ve grown to really love these girls, and really get to know them past basketball,” Bradstreet said. “They’ve basically become my sisters.”

Bradstreet said she will miss playing and practicing after state playoffs conclude.

“It hurts to know I won’t be here playing basketball the next week,” Bradstreet said. “I feel like it’s something I’ve been so comfortable with doing for the past four years of my life.”

Lombard said despite the team’s previous successes, every season is different.

“I really have enjoyed coaching this group of girls,” Lombard said. “The neat part is every year, it’s a journey. Each year is different.”