Isabella girls win back-to-back area titles

Published 3:55 pm Friday, February 9, 2018

For the second year in a row, Isabella won the 2018 Area 5-1A girls basketball title following a 72-26 win over Autaugaville in the championship game on Feb. 8.

“It’s always good to win your area,” Isabella head coach Jared Day said. “It’s a championship, and those are what you play for.”

The Mustangs hosted the title game as the No. 1 seed in the area tournament, and gave the home fans something to cheer about early and often.

Isabella scored the game’s first 13 points and frustrated the Eagles with its pressure defense.

In many ways, the championship followed the same script as the Mustangs’ semifinal matchup.

It was another somewhat slow start for Isabella offensively, however once again everything seemed to get rolling before the buzzer sounded to end the first quarter.

The Mustangs led 32-16 at halftime of the title game and continued to push the pace every chance they got.

Carmelina Fjeldstad hauls in a defensive rebound in the area title game on Feb. 8. (Photo by Anthony Richards)

Isabella did a nice job of moving the ball around and getting multiple players involved in the game plan. As a result, four Isabella players finished with double figures in scoring.

Synia Chattman led the way with 31 points, followed by Sophia Underwood with 13, Kiara Ford with 12 and Lexi Owens with 10.

“It feels good to go out there and get the win, especially since it’s my last year,” Isabella senior Chattman said.

Winning the area was one of the first goals for Isabella, which will host Winterboro in the sub-regionals at 7 p.m. on Feb. 12.

Isabella knows all too well that hosting a sub-regional does not guarantee advancing to the next round.

The Mustangs lost on its home court a year ago in that scenario and are focused on not repeating a similar fate.

“Last year, we let them get a lead on us, but this year it’s going to be different,” Chattman said. “We’re going to be ready to play.”

According to Day, last year’s sub-regional loss has been on the minds of him and his players since it happened.

“There’s probably some point in every practice where that game gets brought up,” Day said. “That was a bad feeling last year, and we’re determined to win the next game.”