Being an 11 seed, Tyler will only be favored to win its first round game against Southwestern Illinois, but the Apaches feel they can compete with any team in the tournament.
"We are going to give some people some challenges," Caitlyn Ramirez said. "We are going to make teams work extra hard, they are not going to know what's hit them basically, we are ready for all that." Bria Emanuel added, "I don't really look at the seed because anybody can lose at anytime, we just got to stay focused and we want to cut a net."
Making their first appearance since 2007, in order to make the noise they want, the Apaches must rise to the occasion.
"You are going to have some that are going to be a little shell shocked in the beginning and you have to get that shell shock to go away pretty quick or they won't leave it out on the floor," head coach Trenia Tillis-Jones said. Birttny Norris added, "We need to play at a higher level than we have been playing, but still within our game and what we know how to do. I feel like if we do that then we will win."
Going to the national tournament meanwhile is nothing new for Trinity Valley. The Lady Cardinals are making their seventh straight trip, but this team has a chance to make history by capturing the school's third consecutive national championship.
"It would mean a lot because that means it's the first time it would happen at Trinity Valley someone won three in a row," Roddrika Patton said. Shlonte Allen added,"It mean a lot to me, it would make me feel good to get my second ring." Coach Elena Lovato ended by saying, "We talked about leaving a legacy and I feel like this is the last mile of the journey you know. If we are running a marathon, this is it."
Having the number one seed and being the favorite brings added pressure, but its nothing the Lady Cards say they can't handle.
"We are the number one team and we have all the talent in the world to win the championship again," Kuaneshia Baker said. Allen added, "Its a lot of pressure, but we try to not let it get to us. We are just trying to stay humble so we can go win our third championship."
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