NACOGDOCHES — Susan Agesen put the weight of her team on her shoulders Saturday at William R. Johnson Coliseum, and after a 34-point performance, has carried them to the Final Four.
The Edgewood girls basketball team defeated District 18-2A rival Winnsboro, 62-52, in their Class 2A Region III final on the Stephen F. Austin campus to advance to Austin and play for a chance at a state title.
“We knew that in regionals Winnsboro would be the toughest team to beat,” Agesen said. “It feels great (to be the high scorer of the game) … I couldn’t have done this without my teammates.”
Edgewood improved to 31-6 on the season and will play in the state semifinals at the Frank Erwin Center on Thursday in Austin. The Lady Dogs’ opponent will be announced on Sunday. Winnsboro finished the season at 28-9.
Agesen also made 10 of her 14 free throw attempts in the game. Chandler Short, who nailed four 3-pointers, added 13 points for Edgewood. She was followed by Micaela Brown, who scored eight.
“She’s just a great athlete,” Edgewood head coach Kyle Short said of Agesen. “She helps us inside and she handles the ball to relieve pressure on the outside … and she had a great performance tonight.”
Standout forward Brea Draper led Winnsboro with 25 points. Hannah Pinnell and Danie Mabry followed with eight and six points, respectively.
Edgewood took the game’s first lead on the back of Agesen. She scored the Lady Dogs’ first six points to give Edgewood a 6-2 lead to open the game. The Lady Dogs still led by four with three minutes to play in the first period, and pushed their advantage to five after a 3-pointer by Allie Orrick.
From there, however, Winnsboro fought back and ended the quarter on a 9-2 run. Draper spurred the run with five points in less than 30 seconds. She followed a pair of free throws with three points the old-fashioned way to tie the game at 14 with 1:38 left in the first quarter.
Brown recaptured the lead on Edgewood’s next possession, but 4-0 run by Winnsboro to close the period gave the Lady Raiders an 18-16 lead.
Winnsboro pushed its lead to five early in the second quarter. Draper again led the way, scoring six points to start the period giving Winnsboro a 26-21 lead.
Edgewood, however, responded with a run of its own, and after three from Short and back-to-back buckets from Orrick, the Lady Dogs led 28-26. The two teams traded baskets for the rest of the quarter, and Edgewood led 33-31 at halftime.
Scoring slowed down after the break, but a strong finish in the third quarter gave the Lady Dogs a 44-38 lead heading into the final period.
Winnsboro began to chip away in the fourth, and with 3:56 to play, took a 49-47 lead on a three-pointer by Holly Stone. But a pair of free throws by Brown on Edgewood’s next possession and a steal and an easy bucket by Agesen regained the lead for the Lady Dogs for the rest of the game.
The Lady Raiders trailed by three and had possession under their own basket with 25 seconds to play, but a turnover on the inbound pass led to a pair of free throws by Agesen, who closed out the game with seven straight points and sealed the Lady Dogs’ regional championship win.
Edgewood 62, Winnsboro 52
Class 2A Region III Final
At SFA’s William R. Johnson Coliseum, Nacogdoches
EDGEWOOD — Susan Agesen, 34; Chandler Short, 13; Micaela Brown, 8; Allie Orrick, 7. FT: 14-20.
WINNSBORO — Brea Draper, 25; Hannah Pinnell, 8; Danie Mabry, 6; Robyn Davis, 5; Hayley Cox, 4; Holly Stone, 4. FT: 15-19.
THREE POINT GOALS — E: Short (4), Brown, Orrick. W: Cox, Draper, Stone.
RECORDS — Edgewood 31-6; Winnsboro 28-9.
NEXT UP — Edgewood vs. TBA, Thursday, Class 2A state semifinal.