Back-to-back: DeSoto adds another State Title to their legacy
It has been the come-back story to watch all season. DeSoto, defending state champions, was ready to get back on the court and show the entire state that the Lady Eagles Legacy was not even close to being over... in fact, it was still only beginning. With a perfect district record (14-0) and only two losses the entire season (35-2), DeSoto took on South Grand Prairie in the UIL 6A Girls Basketball Championship Game and walked away with a 40-23 victory!
With some of the best high school girls basketball athletes the state has possibly ever seen in LSU signee Sa'Myah Smith, Kansas State signees Ja'Mia Harris and Michayla Gatewood, Kentucky signee Tionna Herron, Texas signee Amina Muhammad and more, DeSoto had been set up for success for four years. Despite being riddled with injuries and recovery as Smith, Harris, and Gatewood all suffered ACL injuries, the Lady Eagles proved their resiliency by making it to the state tournament three times over the last four years- two of which resulted in state titles.
"It's been a hard journey to get here. People will talk about this team for the rest of our lives," said head coach Andrea Robinson following Saturday evening's 40-23 victory over South Grand Prairie at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. During the game, it was a team effort that kept South Grand Prairie from being able to do much of anything. With high game IQ, impressive defending, and a talented offense ready to score early and often, the Lady Eagles set the tone and ran with it. SMU signee Jiya Perry and Mississippi signee Ayanna Thompson combined for 16 points to help lead DeSoto to their second state championship victory. "I told them about this game and what we wanted to accomplish," started Robinson. "It was to leave a legacy. These girls brought the first championship now bringing back-to-back and it's an amazing accomplishment."
Harris scored 14 points and recorded four rebounds with two assists while going 6-for-8 from the free throw line before being named the State Championship MVP. "I just got into my game," said Harris after the game. "Seeing Sa'Myah and Tionna weren't able to get buckets, so I just had their back and did what I had to do."
Smith added a nod towards Harris' recovery: "She has worked so hard during this comeback. Nobody knows her journey; nobody knows what she's been through," Smith said after saying how proud she was that Harris was named MVP.
Although the bigger names are graduating and moving onto the next chapters of their basketball careers, there is a wealth of knowledge left trickling down into the DeSoto Lady Eagles' basketball program. Their legacy isn't finished and fans can expect to see greatness continue to arise out of the coming seasons.