Coming out of the regular season with an 18-6 record, the Lady Reds were the 13 seed in the 3A state tournament. After a win against Colorado Academy, the Reds advanced to the Sweet 16, where the team lost to Colorado Springs Christian School (4 seed).
Against Colorado Academy in the first round of the tournament (March 3), the Reds were able to get in a good offensive flow after the first quarter, in which the final score was 7-6 with the Reds barely on top. The second quarter, the Reds managed to pull away, going on a 14-9 run. At the half, the score was 21-15. Coming out of the locker room, the Reds went on an offensive and defensive streak, scoring 11 points compared to Colorado Academy’s 4 points. The final quarter was not a double digit quarter for the Reds, but the team was up 9-8 at the end of the quarter. The final score was 41-27, advancing the Reds into the Sweet Sixteen. Top scorers for the Reds against Colorado Academy were Jayde Contreras (17) with 8, and Addie Randel (20), Alexis Lamoreaux (18), and Brynn Millett (17) each with 5 points. In fact, nearly the entire team was able to contribute offensively, with additional players Courtney Leafgren (17), Bailie Duncan (19), Sydney Booth (19), and Kennedi Ingram (18) each scoring 4 points. Eaton shot 46 percent from the field, and had 13 steals to 19 turnovers.
The next state tournament game (March 4) against Colorado Springs Christian School was a different story for the Reds, which ended up losing 25-60. The Reds were unable to convert offensively and were unable to shut down a few of CSCS’s key players on offense. According to Maxpreps, the Reds had only one double-digit quarter, whereas CSCS had double-digit quarters every quarter, some of which were nearly 20 points. At the half, the Reds were down 10-29, followed by a low-scoring quarter of only 5 points. Although the Reds were able to score 10 points in the fourth, CSCS scored 19, effectively shutting Eaton out with a final score of 60-25. Top scorers for the Reds were Jayde Contreras (17) with 7 points and Whitley Ervin (18) with 4 points. Overall, Eaton shot only 31 percent from the field and had 18 turnovers. For CSCS, Megan Essenger (19) was the top-scorer with 19 points, followed by Rachel Ingram (19) with 18 points. Brynn Millett (17) said, “I definitely think we left it all out there for state; obviously there are teams that are better than you, and girls that are better than you individually, but I feel as though we went into every game with the mindset that we were going to win, and if we didn’t, we just
picked ourselves up, and looked for ways to improve.”
Senior Jayde Contreras weighed in on her last season with the Reds, saying, “It was nice to receive the title ‘team leader’ after three years of working my way up the totem pole, for sure. I was given the opportunity to work on my patience and leadership skills, and those are skills I’m definitely going to need for the rest of my life.”
Millett said, “I think that this past season was definitely unique. There was a lot of growing that had to be done in order for us to play the way that we did. I also think that we proved a lot of people wrong. We graduated an incredible starting 5 last year, and I’m sure this year people overlooked us, but we proved that hard work will continue to get you places. I definitely think we came together as a team.”
As far as favorite memories of the season go, Contreras said that some of her favorite memories were of her crazy teammates and the inside jokes that went with them, the time when one of the team managers, George Perdomo (20), drained a half-court shot, and the time when coach Todd Hernandez made a half-court shot at practice. For Millett, her favorite moment was coming off of the court for the last time at state and hugging her fellow seniors Contreras and Courtney Leafgren.
For the 3A bracket for the ongoing state tournament, click here.