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Milano clinches playoff position Seize first postseason berth in 11 years
Reporter Staff Writer

Senior Ashleigh Dykes pumped in 18 points to lead the Lady Eagles to their playoff clinching come-frombehind victory over Granger. 
Reporter/Holly Jentsch Senior Ashleigh Dykes pumped in 18 points to lead the Lady Eagles to their playoff clinching come-frombehind victory over Granger. Reporter/Holly Jentsch MILANO— The Milano Lady Eagles are headed to the postseason for the first time in 11 years.

The question is they don’t know what place they will finish in District 27A.

The girls defeated Granger on the road Friday to clinch a playoff spot.

However, the team fell to Thrall on Tuesday night at Geneva Paceley Gym 34-27, which leaves the two teams tied at 6-1 atop the league standings, each with one game to go.

Should they both win their respective games, a playoff game to see who would go in what slot to the postseason would be played.

The Lady Eagles just couldn’t get their shots to fall against the Tigerettes, trailing their visitors 14-6 at the half.

Ashleigh Dykes led all scorers with 19 points. Masey Turnage was the team’s top rebounder with six boards.

Milano’s co-district championship, should they win their final district game on Feb. 8, would be the first piece of league hardware since 1992 when the team won the district title.

The win on Friday clinched a postseason spot for the Lady Eagles for the first time since 2000.

Milano trailed in Granger 11-9 after the first, but battled back to take a slim 18-17 lead into halftime. But the third quarter, the two teams were tied at 26-26 and the game came down to the final eight minutes. The Lady Eagles were able to prevail 39-34.

Ashleigh Dykes led Milano with 18 points, followed by Raighley Shaw’s 15. Allison Dodd contributed six points.

Coach Beard says that the girls have really come together and applied themselves to make things work this season.

“We are very proud of these young ladies, how they have stepped up and showed everyone what they were capable of doing. They have worked hard for us all season and have bought into what we were trying to accomplish,” Beard said. “ The taste of the postseason has brought about some nervousness, but they are very excited about what they have done. Some still haven’t grasped exactly what they have done, but are looking forward to the postseason challenge--something new.”

This is a big step for the Lady Eagles basketball program as a whole.

“I am hoping this will open the door and bring excitement for our girls’ basketball program here in Milano.”

The Lady Eagles have an open date on Friday and will close out their regular season on Tuesday, Feb. 8 when they host Bartlett.

MILANO SEASON STATS Scoring—Messer 12.6, Sanders 10.5, Robinson 10.0, Jentsch 9.8, Gibbons 5.2, Sanders 5.3, Bryant 4.6. Rebounds—Messer 8.3, Jents. 6.2 Assists—Robinson 6.2, Sand. 2.4 3PTS—Robinson 28, Sanders 21 Steals—Messer 68, Robinson 53

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