Girls Varsity Basketball · Lady Bulldogs’ experience carries them to region championship, one win from state

After a successful 29-1 season and district and region tournament championships, the girls basketball team is heading into Saturday’s substate round.

Bearden has done so with a young roster, but most of those young players also have plenty of experience.

Of the five starters, Zneyah McLaughlin is the lone senior. There are three juniors with Emily Gonzalez, Maddie Brillhart, and Jennifer Sullivan, along with sophomore Avery Treadwell. 

“Although we only start one senior, the other four starters have played a lot of minutes and a lot of basketball overall,” Coach Justin Underwood said. “I think the youth and not having a summer to get used to each other was tough at first, but our girls have really gelled as a group.

“I think by this time of year, players have logged so many minutes their age can be overlooked. Our girls have done a great job of playing within themselves while using their talents to help blend with our team concepts.”

This is the first time the girls have made it to substate since 2018 when they made it all the way to the state semifinals where they lost to nationally ranked Riverdale. 

The girls host Science Hill in a substate game on Saturday night at 7 p.m. with a place in the state tournament on the line.