Laramie Lady Plainsmen Win State Championship [PHOTOS]
The Laramie Lady Plainsmen took down an undefeated team from Natrona County, 38-35, to win the Wyoming Class 4A State Basketball Championship on Saturday at the Casper Events Center. It's the first state championship in basketball for the Lady Plainsmen program.
Laramie (23-4) came out in a triangle-and-two defense against the Fillies as a way to keep Natrona (25-1) from getting the ball inside to Wyoming Gatorade Player of the Year, sophomore Kaylee Johnson. On the other side of the court the Lady Plainsmen hit 5-of-6 treys to jump out to 15-4 lead with 3:34 to go in the first quarter. They would hit once more from downtown to finish the first quarter 6-of-10 from beyond the arc and take a 20-8 lead over a stunned Natrona team. Head Coach Rod Tyson had his Lady Plainsmen slow down the pace at the beginning of the second quarter and Laramie was able to take a 23-14 lead into the locker room.
While the slow pace held the Fillies off for a while, they made a big charge in the fourth quarter. Junior Veronique Browning hit back-to-back 3's to pull it to a 32-30 game with 2:27 to go. With 33 seconds left Natrona pulled within one point at 35-34 on a bucket from junior Emma Norvelle, but Laramie had an immediate answer with a quick basket from junior Madison Legerski. The Fillies would not get any closer as senior Kyleigh Hiser hit 2-of-4 free throws in the final seconds and a 3-point shot from Natrona senior Kayzenne Graney missed the mark, giving the Lady Plainsmen the championship.
Hiser led LHS with a game-high 11 points while Ali Beckler and Legerski added 8 apiece. The Lady Plainsmen shot 39 percent (12/31) from the field and 47 percent (7/15) from beyond the arc.
Natrona was led by Johnson with 10 points and 8 rebounds. The Fillies were held to 36 percent (14-39) from the floor and 33 percent (2/6) from 3-point range.