Shadow Ridge girls basketball coach Dorothy Kendrick unleashed a triumphant yell at the end of her team’s 37-29 road win at Legacy on Thursday night.
“It felt exhilarating,” she said.
The thrill of surviving. And advancing.
The Mustangs (21-6) overcame a sluggish start by forcing 30 turnovers and extended their season with a victory over the Longhorns in the Mountain Region tournament quarterfinals.
Shadow Ridge advances to play four-time defending Class 4A state champion and national powerhouse Centennial (25-1) in the semifinals on Tuesday.
The Longhorns finish 14-11.
“We had to stay aggressive and we had to come together as at team to pull this off,” Kendrick said. “We had to have a counter to make that happen. One of those things was our defense.”
Shadow Ridge, which last week set the program record for wins in a single season, made a paltry four baskets in the first half but forced 15 turnovers and trailed 16-13 at halftime.
The Mustangs relied again on their defense in the second half, forcing 13 additional turnovers in the third quarter, and subsequently discovered their transition offense to secure a 24-18 lead.
“The girls wanted it more,” Kendrick said. “They weren’t ready to go home.”
The Longhorns took better care of the basketball in the fourth quarter, but couldn’t overcome the six-point deficit. Shadow Ridge’s Jamia Carter scored a game-high 16. Teammate Caitlyn Covington added six points.
“Once we all came together, we knew we wanted to change and make history. I knew it was going to be different,” Carter said of the Mustangs’ season. “We came together and started to win.”
Faith Lutheran 77, Cimarron-Memorial 52 — At Faith Lutheran, Kelsey Howryla scored 30 points as the Crusaders defeated the Spartans.
Quianna Brown had 23 points for Faith Lutheran, which raced out to a 39-15 halftime lead.
Elise Young had 32 points, and teammate Yesenia Wesley-Nash supplied 10 points to lead Cimarron (15-13).
Centennial 87, Palo Verde 17 — At Centennial, Ajanhai Phoumiphat supplied 15 points and seven steals to lead 14 scorers as the Bulldogs blitzed the Panthers.
Aishah Brown had 14 points and nine rebounds, and Taylor Bigby added 13 points for Centennial.
Sierra Lueck led Palo Verde (8-17) with five points.
Canyon Springs 60, Arbor View 16 — At Canyon Springs, Jeanette Fine scored 15 points as the Pioneers ran over the Aggies.
Kayla Johnson and Ja’moni Brown each added 12 points for Canyon Springs, which got 10 points from Sydnei Collier.
Canyon Springs (24-3) will face Faith Lutheran (19-6) in a region semifinal Tuesday at Legacy.
Jessica Castro led Arbor View (5-21) with six points.