Trinity Valley Lady Cardinals headed back to national tournament

The Trinity Valley Lady Cardinals will hit the highway and head to Salina, Kansas next week for the NJCAA Division I Women's basketball tournament.

Trinity Valley clinched a spot in nationals Monday night by defeating Kilgore 58-46.

This is Trinity Valley's second straight trip to the national tournament.

Head coach Michael Landers will resign at the end of the season, having accepted a job at Baton Rouge Community College to be closer to his wife, an assistant coach at LSU.

Landers is currently in his ninth year as coach at TVCC. He led TVCC to the national championship in 2003-2004. For the coach, heading back to Kansas with the Lady Cardinals is bittersweet.

"Trinity Valley has been so good to me and the administration and the staff and the fans have treated me so well since I've been there," Landers said.

"It's a great thing for me to be able to have this team go back to Kansas one more time. I am so tickled for our kids. They have perservered through so much. We played an entire second half last night and an entire game tonight with seven kids. They have battled through adversity and they have not looked for excuses. They have just stepped up and found a way to do it."

Trinity Valley sophomore forward Jasmine Nelson was named the tournament's most valuable player.

"It's real special," Jasmine said of heading back to nationals. "This year we went through a lot and we overcame a lot of things that could have kept us down but we didn't let that bring us down."

The NJCAA Division I Women's Tournament will be March 17-21 in Salina, Kansas.

2009 Region XIV Women's Basketball All-Tournament Team:

MVP-Jasmine Nelson-Trinity Valley
DeShawna Bankes-Trinity Valley
Danyell Oliver-Kilgore
Denetra Kellum-Kilgore
Sarah Stewart-Angelina
Chelsea Foy-Jacksonville