Cowgirls make program history while taking down Farmers


Olivia Short

Coppell senior guard Waverly Hassman makes a jump shot against Lewisville at the CHS Arena on Tuesday. Coppell defeated Lewisville, 56-42. Photo by Olivia Short

Ava Johnson, Staff Writer

Deep into the third quarter, Coppell senior guard Jules LaMendola stepped up to the free throw line after picking herself up from her and-one shot, amping up the energy and excitement of arena. The thundering crowd falls to a hush as the shot goes up. Swish. 

Tuesday night, the Coppell girls basketball team defeated Lewisville 56-42, marking the first time in program history the Cowgirls achieved back-to-back 30 win seasons; demonstrating a foundation of sustainability and success established by veteran stars – such as LaMendola – and Coppell coach Ryan Murphy.

Prior to the game, the Cowgirls emphasized a strong start with high energy after their last game against Lewisville was closer than they had hoped, a 45-43 Coppell victory. 

“We started off slow in the second half but then we had a few possessions in a row where Jules was really aggressive and forced a few fouls,” Murphy said. “Then she got the and-one and that play reenergized us and refocused us and we were able to grow the lead.”

The energy reached a peak during the third quarter after LaMendola’s and-one shot as half court throws flew back and forth, players dove and scrambled for the ball on the floor and the stands erupted in roars after each foul called. 

By the end of the night, LaMendola scored 23 points for the Cowgirls, something the Farmer defense realized and attempted to deter by utilizing a box defense against her, leaving LaMendola cornered, looking for a way out. 

“I’m going to control what I can control, but sometimes it’s out of my control if the [referees] are going to call it or not,” LaMendola said. “I try to identify how they’re trying to shut me down and then I find where my advantages are on the court and exploit those to the best of my ability.”

LaMendola attempted to overcome the Farmers’ defensive strategy by setting screens in hopes of getting open for her teammates, and drawing more fouls, both of which ultimately proved to be successful as half of her points were scored after the strategy against her was implemented. 

Another method the Cowgirls used to deter the Farmers was establishing a solid rebounding presence on both ends of the court. Coppell senior guard Waverly Hassman blocked out any chance of the Farmers winning by stationing herself under the basket and swiping away rebounds, scoring 17 points for the Cowgirls, strengthening their lead over Lewisville and guiding them towards their victory over the Farmers. 

The Cowgirls play this Friday at Flower Mound.

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