For the second straight year the Alvord Lady Bulldogs saw their dreams of a trip to the state basketball tournament shattered by the Brock Eagles.
Brock (33-5) led from start to finish on their way to a 46-36 victory over Alvord (28-12) in the Class 2A Region II final at Stephenville Saturday.
The Eagles are heading back to Austin in search of their fifth straight state championship, while the Lady Bulldogs ponder on what could have been.
“I’m so proud of the girls and how hard they fought,” Alvord coach Rob Schmucker said. “I can’t say enough about the group of girls we have here. It’s going to be hard to see them [the seniors] go.”
The first quarter proved to be the demise of Alvord as they got off to a difficult start. Brock torched the Lady Bulldogs zone defense with four 3-pointers in the opening quarter to take an 18-8 lead.
“We had some communication problems with me, and that’s my fault,” Schmucker said about the first-quarter defense. “We just didn’t get it the way we wanted. They still had to hit some big shots, and they did.
“They hit some big shots in the first half, and it seemed every time we tried to chip away at their lead they came back with a big basket.”
Alvord’s switch to a man defense slowed Brock, but they could never recover from the 10-point deficit.
Brock’s defense was just as tough. Alvord never scored more than eight points in the first three quarters. The Eagles took a 28-16 lead at the half.
Defensively, the Lady Bulldogs mix things up, but they continued to struggled offensively.
“We started to mix it up there, so they wouldn’t feel comfortable with the defense we were running,” Schmucker said. “We knew in the second half they were going to try to milk the clock with their lead, so we had to change it to a man.”
Brock’s strategy paid off. Alvord got within seven in the third period, but could not get any closer as the time ticked away on their season.
The Eagles took a 30-23 advantage to the final frame, which would be more than enough. They scored the first six points of the period to put the game away.
“The seniors have had three trips to the regional tournament, but numbers don’t show what these girls are about,” Schmucker said. “They are a great group on and off the court. I’ll take them any year.
“There is nothing I can say to make them feel any better or hurt any less. There are a lot of people that would love to be in our spot playing at the regional final. We came up short, but at least we had the opportunity to play [in this game].”
Marissa Schedcik led Alvord with 13, and Sam Hahn added 10. Katie Claborn tossed in six, and Carley King scored five.
Brock was led by Taylor Wallace with 11.