Mustangs advance to state championshipPublished 5:14pm Wednesday, March 2, 2011
The Madison Academy Lady Mustangs moved one step closer to avenging last year’s state championship loss by defeating Montgomery Academy, 64-46, Wednesday at the Birmingham Jefferson Convention Complex.
The Mustangs (35-3) trailed for a majority of the opening period, but took the lead for the first time on an Amara Mayers three with 49 seconds remaining in the first.
The Mustangs would not trail again.
“Our girls knew it was going to be a full game,” Madison Academy head coach Brian Privett said. “I’m proud of how our girls held their poise and would not allow (Montgomery) to take momentum.”
Although the Mustangs fell behind early for an extended period of time for the first time in the playoffs, Privett said his girls know what they did wrong and know what they need to correct before Saturday’s Class 3A championship game.
“We did not finish in transition, but those are things our girls know,” Privett said. “That was good for us (at the start of the game), and I trust our girls and how they plan for a game. It’s either tuck your tail and go to the house or get ready. This is the Final 4 and everybody’s good.”
Montgomery Academy head coach Glen Sylvest said he was proud of the way his team competed, finishing the season 29-2.
“Their team is really well coached, and they didn’t get rattled,” Sylvest said. “But I’m really proud of our girls.”
Madison Academy wore down Montgomery in the paint, led by Mayers with 20 points, followed by Lydia McGee and Nyla Johnson with 13 points apiece.
“We were a bit outsized, for sure,” said Montgomery Academy’s Layne Doctson.
KeKe Fletcher also had nine points in the victory, while Halie Loney had six.
For Montgomery Academy, Doctson had a team-high 12 points, followed by Meredith Lee with 10.
Haley Andreades, Dana Smith and Miah Brooks each finished with eight.
Wednesday’s victory will set up a championship final Saturday, March 5 at 9 a.m. against the winner of Danville and Sumter County.
The Mustangs were defeated by Sumter County in the finals last season.
“We don’t take a Final 4 opportunity for granted,” Privett said. “The main things these girls want to do is take these next three days prepare and finish.”