Girls Plant Home Seed In Postseason Play


A stellar regular-season showing by the Lady Longhorns has earned the team the right to open postseason play in the friendly confines of Wilson Dome.

In the playoff format, the two, three and four finishers play host in the first round to the fifth, sixth and seventh seeds.

Although Payson finished 7-5 in Grand Canyon region action and tied with Flagstaff for third, the Lady Horns were given the third seed and Flagstaff fell to fourth because Payson had a better overall record (11-6) than the Eagles (11-7).

With the third seed in tow, the Lady Horns play host to No. 6 Chinle at 6 p.m.

PHS coach Rory Huff said he is elated with the home seed but was hoping to avoid Chinle which plays a pressing defense and a run-and-gun offense.

"Those reservation teams scare me," he said. "If they get hot, they can really hurt you."

In Monday's practice, Huff turned up the defensive intensity in an effort to prepare his team for Chinle's style of play.

"We want to be prepared for them," he said.

The Lady Horns wrapped up the regular season Feb. 5 with a 44-30 loss Feb. 5 to homestanding Page.

In two previous games, the teams had split victories. Payson beat Page in the championship of the Holiday Hoops tournament, but lost a Grand Canyon region regular season clash in Wilson Dome.

At halftime of the rubber match, Payson trailed only 18-17 mostly because the Lady Longhorns 1-2-2 zone kept Page at bay.

In the second half, the Sand Devils' Natasha Begay, who led all scorers with 18 points, fueled a Page comeback that nailed down the win.

Tracy Fitzpatrick led the Lady Horns with eight points which included 6-for-6 free throw shooting. Krystal McRae and Haylee Huff finished with six points each.

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