Lady Brahman basketball gets district playoff win

The Okeechobee High School Lady Brahmans varsity girls basketball team defeated South Fork 57-52 in the district quarterfinals on Feb. 4, giving them their first district playoff win since 2012.

Lady Brahmans coach Jovanny Torres with the way his team responded to adversity in the playoff game.

“I was very proud of my girls for pulling that off,” said Torres of the playoff victory. “We were down in the first half by 11 I believe. We just were not playing disciplined basketball. We had three key players with three fouls and one with four.”

After falling behind 27-21 at halftime, the Lady Brahmans switched things up defensively to turn the game in their favor.

“I went to a full court trap in the third quarter and it paid off,” continued Torres. “We were able to get steals and score on some lay ups and we ended the third quarter tied with South Fork. We got a little sloppy with our press break in the fourth quarter and turned the ball over a lot and I ended up wasting all my timeouts with about 6 minutes to go. But just had to keep them calm and keep their spirits up. We ended up finishing strong and pulled it off.”

The win earns Okeechobee a ticket to the district semi-finals where they’ll face a powerhouse Heritage team that went 16-9 this year and is coming off an appearance in the regional semi-finals last year.

The Lady Brahmans recently faced Heritage on Jan. 24 and lost 66-22, thanks in part to a dominating defensive performance by Heritage, especially in the second half.

“Heritage is a very tough team, they’re the number one seed in our district and beat us pretty bad during the regular season,” said Torres. “But we will get in the game film room and break down our mistakes and come out Wednesday with nothing to lose and play until the buzzer goes off.”

Okeechobee will travel to face Heritage on Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. in the district semi-final at Bayside High School.

Richard Marion is a staff writer and photographer at Lake Okeechobee News and can be reached at rmarion@newszap.com.

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