They Almost Had It All

South Broward Girls Basketball Finishes Epic Season, but Falls Short of States


Alec Boiangiu

Bulldogs Guard Fabiana Poindujour dribbles past a Flanagan defender.

Ethan Lacouty, Editor

It seemed like the Lady Bulldogs were headed to a possible state championship after smoking five teams in the district and regional playoffs, but the Miami Senior High Stingarettes proved to be a formidable opponent. South Broward could not surmount a stacked Miami squad, even though they had an excellent showing, losing only by 16 points. In the games leading up to the regional championship, the Stingarettes smashed the competition, skewering the Coral Gables Cavaliers 84-3 and snuffing out the Doral Academy Firebirds 55-23. As the final buzzer sounded, the score stood 52-36 in a stinging defeat for the Bulldogs, falling one game short of state semifinals. 

“This year was filled learning experiences,” said Lady Bulldogs guard Fabiana Poindujour. “Our loss to Miami Senior High taught us how to deal with defeat and adversity and better prepare for next season.”

But, despite being knocked out of a chance at states, the Bulldogs can hold their heads high after ending with an impressive 22-5 record on the season.

South Broward kicked off their playoff run on February 4th with a decisive 61-38 victory against Flanagan High School taking home the 7A District 14 Championship. Throughout the entire first half, the Bulldogs dismantled the Falcons defense with their rebounding and quick passes around the court. 

In the second half, South Broward’s tenacious hustle only allowed the Flanagan to score off turnovers, as the Lady Bulldogs swarmed each Falcon that touched the ball. SBHS forward Jamesha Card not only scored 26 of the teams’ 61 points, but her active hands helped force Flanagan to turn the ball over more times than they wanted, including eight turnovers in the fourth quarter alone.

“Once the game is in rhythm, I anticipate where the ball is going to go and make my move.” said Card. “I always stay aggressive.”

But the district title wasn’t the end of it. The Falcons and Bulldogs faced off once more in the regional quarterfinals on February 10th, a win or go home game. Despite Flanagan’s physicality, the Bulldogs maintained their fast-paced play style, swinging the ball around the court, and racking up points in the paint. When the dust settled, the Bulldogs came out on top, 57-28. Card said the difference between the district title game and the regional quarterfinals all boiled down to pressure.

 “It was an elimination game so every basket mattered,” said Card. “Most of the team are sophomores, so we weren’t used to the atmosphere. We had to drown out the noise and stay focused on our ultimate goal.” 

The following week, Western High School’s guards’ skillful dribbling and crisp passing tested South Broward’s defense in the regional semifinals. But Bulldogs’ Card and Poindujour combined for 32 points in the 10 point win the Bulldogs used to defeat the Wildcats 60-50, advancing them to the regional championship game against Miami Senior High School. 

“We were fully prepared for the Western game and cherished every one of our possessions,” said Poindujour. “It’s the ‘survive and advance’ mentality that has gotten this team through close games like this one.”

But the party had to end sometime. And for this year’s team it ended with a sting. South Broward struggled offensively throughout the game vs Miami Senior High Stingarettes, posting a season low 36 points with no Lady Bulldog scoring over 10 points.

“Our shots just weren’t falling,” said Poindujour. “It was a frustrating end to our season because we believed that the team could have gotten farther and won it all.”

Yet since 1998, SBHS has been building a girls basketball dynasty, winning multiple district titles and six state championships over the span of 10 years. Although this year they were denied a chance at states, the young team, consisting of mostly underclassmen, defied all expectations with unmistakable chemistry that dates back to middle school. Lady Bulldogs head coach Sharlene Ferguson sees the potential to win a state championship.

“Two years ago, most of this current team was playing down the street at Attucks Middle,” said Ferguson. “I truly believe this team is headed in the right direction and has the potential to win big.”