Strong ready to take on Bradley in regional tournament

Bradley was the regular-season champion of the 1A 7 District but an upset loss in the tournament dropped the Lady Bears to a No. 3 seed in this week’s 1A 4 Regional Tournament at Emerson. That puts them in Strong’s way as the Lady Bulldogs play for a berth in the state tournament Thursday at 7 p.m.

Bradley brings a 23-6 record into the postseason. The Lady Bears fell to Mt. Ida 41-30 in the district tournament last week.

“I don’t have much information about Bradley,” Strong coach Melinda Champion said Monday night. “I am waiting on film to see what we need to work on. I feel the key to beating them will be to play good defense, keep them off the boards and make our shots and free throws.”

Strong brings a record of 16-8. The Lady Bulldogs fell to Emerson 76-52 in the district tournament final on Friday. 

“I feel like we are doing pretty good,” said Champion. “We have had a couple of players step up their game on offense and defense. I think that if everyone plays well, we should come out with a win.”

The two teams have a common opponent in Taylor. Strong defeated Taylor 45-36 at Parkers Chapel on Dec. 29. Bradley lost to Taylor 53-37 on Jan. 23.

The Lady Bulldogs didn’t qualify for the regional tournament two years ago so Champion said the team has already had a successful season. 

“The girls are happy about making regional and don’t want to just settle for regionals; they want to make it to state,” she said. “Whether they win or lose, I am happy with the season they have had.”

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