Dragonettes’ Season Ends In Quarterfinal Loss To Westview

By Noah McKay

MURFREESBORO – The York Dragonettes’ season came to an end in a 44-42 loss against defending champion Westview in the quarterfinal round of the Class 2A girls’ state basketball tournament at the Murphy Center.

The Dragonettes battled back from a double-digit deficit in the second half, but ultimately fell just short as they were eliminated by the Lady Chargers for the second consecutive season.

“I think we were prepared as much as we could’ve been,” said York head coach Michael Green. “It’s a great zone defense (for Westview). We got down into that hole. You get down 10 or 12 against a team like that and it’s going to be hard to come back. As always, these girls battled back. At the end of the day, against a team like that you can’t get down 12 points. I hate losing, but I would rather lose here than not to get here.”

The two powerhouse 2A squads traded blows early, with Ellie Leffew hitting a layup after an assist from Gabby Beaty, but the Lady Chargers answered with a 5-0 run to take a 10-9 lead at the end of the quarter.

The Lady Chargers stretched their run to 13-0 to take an 18-9 lead midway through the third. Raylee Werner and Gabby Beaty each hit threes in the final three minutes as the Dragonettes trailed 23-18 at halftime.

The Lady Chargers continued their strong play early in the third, stretching the lead to 32-21 before a Leffew three ended the run. The Dragonette offense then came to life as they closed the frame on a 7-0 run on baskets by Emy Crabtree, Leffew and Werner to make it 35-31 at the end of three.

The teams traded buckets in the first half of the final frame, but a trap defense deployed by Green worked as the Dragonettes rattled off a 6-0 run on two baskets by Crabtree and another by Miss Basketball finalist Reese Beaty to tie the game at 42. Westview then held the ball in the final minute, with fellow Miss Basketball Finalist Jada Harrison beginning to drive towards the rim in the final moments. Reese Beaty was called for a foul and Harrison converted two free throws. A last-second shot by Gabby Beaty was tipped, securing the victory for the Lady Chargers.

“You’ve got to gamble,” said Green on what happens when you face a deficit. “You’re not going to win without taking gambles. Offensively, we didn’t do a well enough job, but we battled.”

Leffew led the Dragonettes with 11 points. Crabtree added 10. Werner scored nine. Gabby and Reese Beaty each scored six points.

Harrison led all scorers with 16 points for Westview.

The contest was also the final game in the high school careers of seniors Crabtree, Leffew and Gabby Beaty.

The Dragonettes finished the season with a 33-3 overall record. They were district and region champions. It marked their second straight trip to the state tournament and 11th trip in school history.

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By Michael Lindsay


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