Brusly Lady Panthers basketball coach Shawn Bradford made no excuses for his team’s 62-15 loss to University Lab last Friday, Feb. 2.
“We have to quit making excuses and just go play hard every night we put the uniform on,” Bradford said. “Thirty games into the season, we can’t keep saying that we are young.”
Bradford said there were many causes of the defeat, which he calls “self-inflicted mistakes.” Careless turnovers, not boxing out to secure rebounds, and not being mentally tough enough to battle back are all things that Bradford says, as a team, they control.
“It’s not much to be said after a performance like that. We just flat out didn’t show up to play,” Bradford said. “We can’t do that, especially when you are playing a talented team like U High.”
Coach Bradford did find some positives in the game, despite the loss.
“Defensively, I think Mackenzie Jenkins did a pretty good job early on in our man to man defense. She drew the assignment of guarding their best player and she did pretty well,” Bradford said “Our help defense was not up to par so eventually we had to go to a zone defense. U High moved the ball through the zone well and shot lights out from perimeter.”
All is not lost for the Lady Panthers this season, and Coach Bradford said that they still have a chance at making it to the playoffs.
“With two games remaining in the regular season and the strong possibility of traveling to play the number one or two seed in the playoffs, it’s important for us to represent ourselves in the most high manner and be a tough draw to whomever,” Bradford said. “We have given away so many games this year, and we have played some tough opponents down to the wire. We could have easily been a top 20 team this year.”
“It’s important for us as a unit to play well and figure things out to perform consistently at a higher level. As the coach, I have to find a way to have this team ready for these challenges,” Bradford said.