Lady Devils 2A Region Champs Again


By: Nick Hall

The Fyffe Lady Red Devils are no strangers to success on the hardwood, but it was the Lady Wildcats of Sand Rock who rolled into Pete Mathews Coliseum for the region finals Tuesday sporting the No. 1 state ranking. Fyffe wasn’t intimidated. The Lady Red Devils came ready for a battle and that’s exactly what they got. Alexia Barber sank two baskets, one from behind the arc, in the first 1:10 on her way to tournament MVP honors. Fyffe led by two midway of the period after a layup by Gracie Hicks, two free throws by Maggie Woodall, and another jumper from Barber. A couple of layups by Sand Rock’s Kynleigh Chesnut put the Lady Wildcats on top for the first time, but that lead quickly evaporated with a Hicks jumper and layups by Madison Myers and Maggie Woodall, which gave Fyffe a narrow 17-15 lead at the end of the first period. A pair of 3-pointers early in the second by Sand Rock’s Kirby Deboard and Caley Garrett, put the Lady Wildcats back on top, but the lead was quickly snatched back with a layup from Hicks and a trey from Myers. Sand Rock’s Haley Lisenbee tied the game once again at the free throw line, and once again Alexia Barber hit a jumper to put the Lady Devils back up by two. That lead lasted mere seconds as Sand Rock’s Garrett hit a layup to go into the intermission all tied up at 27-27. Myers and Garrett traded threes early in the third period, and the game continued to go back and forth during the period, ending with Fyffe down 44-41 heading into the final period. Anabelle Taylor, who hit a layup at the end of the third period to cut Sand Rock’s lead to three, hit another to open the fourth and cut the Lady Wildcats lead to one. Chesnut and Taylor continued to battle in the paint, trading layups, until Taylor tied the game at the free throw line. Another free throw by Barber, with just under five minutes to play, gave Fyffe the lead for the final time. Marie Woodall hit a deep basket which put the Lady Red Devils up by four with little more than three minutes to play. A Barber layup, combined with crucial stretch free throws by Taylor, Myers and Marie Woodall, secured the 65-61 win and sent the Lady Red Devils back to Birmingham to try and reclaim their spot atop Alabama girls 2A basketball. Barber netted 17 points and hauled in 11 rebounds on her way to a double-double and tournament MVP honors. Myers and Taylor scored 15 and 10 respectively, joining Barber on the all-tournament team. Marie Woodall had nine points while Maggie Woodall scored eight. Gracie Hicks netted six. “I want to congratulate Sand Rock,” said Fyffe head coach Steve King. “That’s the toughest team we’ve played in two or three years. They’re so hard to guard, and they shoot the ball so well and have so many weapons. You’ve just got to score some points when you play a team like Sand Rock. You can’t go out there and play light.”