Lady Dragons Basketball Reflections

FSDB Girls Basketball team holding 1st place trophies from the Mason-Dixon tournament.

From the start, Physical Education Teacher and Girls Basketball Coach Joy Moers anticipated an outstanding season. As a second-year coach, she welcomed new team members as well as all players from the previous year. Drills were a fundamental aspect of their practice sessions, aimed at building stronger skill sets. On the locker room blackboard, Moers ensured that every player knew the win/loss record for each game along with underlined text for the season record, and relevant statistics. After every game, team members added their chalk marks to the board. She believes that the post-game huddles served as the greatest motivator and increased team spirits ten-fold!

Moers went on to explain, "After our first easy victory, we knew we could go far this season." The Lady Dragons won four straight games before losing to a district team. One of the biggest boosts in district games was winning against St. Joseph Academy by one point. FSDB had not beaten the Flashes since 1994. "During that game, our girls did not panic and continued playing strongly with high passion. We led for most of the game, and at one time we were ahead by 12 points," said Moers.

In December, the Lady Dragons traveled to the Alabama School for the Deaf for the Hackney Classic Tournament. FSDB took home the trophy by beating Georgia School for the Deaf (40-11), Alabama School for the Deaf (44-10) and the Atlanta Area School for the Deaf (44-11). These victories were chalked up in the locker room when they returned to campus.

With a record of 15-5, the Lady Dragons were awarded the first-place seed at the 42nd Annual Mason-Dixon Girls Basketball Tournament, hosted by FSDB.

"Throughout the competition, our girls had this in their minds: 'It’s our home; we will win the championship trophy,'" said Moers.

The girls played hard with passion, a high level of motivation, and excellent sportsmanship. In the first game of the tournament, FSDB faced off against the Louisiana School for the Deaf, Coach Moers' alma mater. It was an easy 49-6 win. In the second game, the Lady Dragons took on an experienced Tennessee School for the Deaf team who bolstered five seniors and had eliminated FSDB in last year's tournament. The Lady Dragons came away with a 43-29 win, propelling them into the Championship Game.

Olivia Brown holding the MVP trophy from the Mason-Dixon Tournament.

The final game would match FSDB against the Mississippi School for the Deaf (MSD), who beat them by 20 points last year. The MSD players fully expected they would win their fourth consecutive Mason-Dixon championship. Lo and behold, FSDB surprised them with a much-improved defense and offense maneuverings. After the third quarter, the Lady Dragons led by 23 points before they were slowed down. Mississippi narrowed down the lead in the fourth quarter to four points. Olivia Brown made two clutch free throws in the final seconds to hang on to the lead and win the game 59-52. Lourdine Jordonne and Ja’Myra Harris received All-Tournament recognition, with Olivia Brown as the Most Valuable Player.

Moers said, "Winning the championship was our biggest joy, and everyone on the team including the coaches and managers had the chance to cut the basketball net. Wow, what a glorious experience this was for our girls!"