BY KYLEIGH SPRIGLE
Final Score: Cooper City 40, MSD 41
The basketball season is soon coming to an end. Every season, one of their final home games is dedicated to the seniors. This year, the Lady Cowboys’ senior night game was on January 17 against the Marjory Stoneman Douglas (MSD) Eagles.
The Lady Cowboys were winning at the beginning half of the game, but lost their lead in the third quarter. The Lady Cowboys tried to pull again, but could not manage it against the Eagles, and lost with a final score of 40-41.
The first points of the game were two free throws made by senior Kristina Walker. After the Lady Cowboys missed multiple shots, the Eagles tied up the game. Walker made two more free throws. The Eagles also made two free throws, tying up the game again. The Eagles finally pulled ahead with free throws, making the game 4-6.
Cooper’s defense started putting the pressure on and MSD did not score again for the rest of the quarter. The Lady Cowboys tied up the game, and then, with less than a minute left on the clock, a three-pointer was made. That quarter ended with Cooper ahead 9-6.
The second quarter is where the Lady Cowboys came alive and gained a large lead. Senior Aliyah Khan scored twice in a row, putting the Lady Cowboys ahead 13-6. The Lady Cowboys held the Eagles from scoring for a long time but finally, MSD was able to get past. However, senior Jennifer Zaitune scored again for the Cowboys.
“We did really badly in the third quarter and it was really hard to bounce back.”Captain Kaia Keppel
MSD made a couple of free throws, making the score 15-10. With 30 seconds left in the quarter, senior and captain Gabriella Johnson made a three-pointer. With less than 20 seconds left, freshman Ella Taubman scored once more for the team. The Lady Cowboys ended that quarter up by 10 points, with a score of 20-10.
“We did okay. We were up by ten in the half, doing great,” captain Kaia Keppel said. “We did really badly in the third quarter and it was really hard to bounce back.”
During the third quarter, the game took a turn for the worst for the Lady Cowboys. The Eagles really came alive offensively and defensively. They scored five times in a row, including a three-pointer and a free throw. This put MSD ahead of the Lady Cowboys, 20-21.
Khan scored and now the Lady Cowboys were up by one. MSD tied it up with a free throw and then scored once more. Keppel made one of her free throws. The Eagles then scored twice in a row, putting them farther ahead at 23-28. Walker made one free throw, followed by Keppel’s shot and another free throw made by Johnson. To end that quarter, MSD scored one more time. The quarter ended with the Lady Cowboys down with a score of 27-30.
“The game did not go the way I wanted it to. I really thought we had it,” Johnson said. “It was still a good night and we should have won.”
The final quarter was the time for the Lady Cowboys to make a comeback. They were down by three then and MSD made one free throw. Keppel returned that favor by making three free throws in a row. The Eagles could not score, while Keppel scored again.
“Really proud of the way the girls fought, but I would have loved to get a good win on senior night.”Coach Dave Johnson
The Lady Cowboys were up by one, it was 32-31. MSD scored again but then missed four free throws. Johnson made a three-pointer, putting the Cowboys in the lead. Keppel gave the Cowboys a bigger lead when she made both of her free throws.
The Eagles kept the pressure on and tied up the game with only minutes left on the clock. Johnson made one free throw and MSD made both of theirs. The Cowboys were down by three but did not give up. Khan made a final shot right before the clock ran out. The game ended with a loss for the Lady Cowboys of 40-41.
“We started great, we had really good defense. We went through half the game where we held them to 10 points. We came out of the locker room and they started working us in the post,” coach Dave Johnson said. “We had a tough night shooting. Really proud of the way the girls fought, but I would have loved to get a good win on senior night.”
The season is not over; there are still districts and possibly regionals and states left. The team’s goal is to make it far into the playoffs.
Photo by Anabella Garcia