Platte County closed the regular season with a second straight win, and now the Pirates want to see if they can put together three straight for the first time this season.
In an emotional end to the regular season, Platte County’s three seniors — Liz Peterson, Amy Lett and Ava White — finished their home careers with a 57-32 win Monday, Feb. 20 at Platte County High School and assured the Pirates would finish above .500 for a second straight season. Now, the focus turns to winning a district game for the first time in six years, but that will have occur away from home.
“It’s really emotional,” Lett said after the 57-32 win over Raytown South. “Once I came to the game, it was like, ‘Wow. This is the last home game. I’m never going to play here again. That hit really hard.”
Platte County continues to make adjustments and find ways to win.
Now at 13-10 overall, the Pirates will be without White for the remainder of the year due to a knee injury. They already were forced to replace junior Rockey Chambers, who left the team last month.
Lett scored six points and Peterson one in their final home games, but Platte County continues to rely on their leadership while developing a solid crop of sophomores.
“I feel like we have become really productive the last few weeks, and the girls are really trying to do what we’re asking them to do and kind of gelled together,” Platte County coach Chris Stubbs said. “With all the adversity they’ve faced, I feel like it’s a really successful season. We told the girls, this is a practice for a championship part of our season.”
That starts Monday, Feb. 27 in a district matchup with Excelsior Springs (1-21) at Excelsior Springs.
Platte County will be seeking its first postseason win since reaching the District 16 championship game in 2011. The Pirates go in with momentum after back-to-back Suburban Conference Blue Division wins, finishing at 5-5 and in third place in the conference.
Raytown South’s turnover problems fueled Platte County’s offense early, resulting in a 26-6 lead at halftime. The advantage extended to 40-11 after three quarters with unlikely scorers stepping up to lead the way.
Platte County sophomore guard Janessa Barmann ended up with 15 points and a pair of 3-pointers, while junior forward Lauren Walker broke into double figures with 12. Jaycie Stubbs, the Pirates’ leading scorer, finished with nine while also running the point.
Winners of two straight four different times this season, Platte County hadn’t been more than two games over .500 at any point this season despite a 4-2 start. The Pirates hope to push past that mark and earn a shot at District 15 top seed St. Pius X in the semifinals next week.
Confidence is high after winning three of four to close the regular season.
“We started off really strong, and we had a little bit of a slump,” Lett said. “But the way we played tonight, we can come back, and I think we’ll put up a fight at least at districts.”
Platte County 57, Winnetonka 50
Jaycie Stubbs, Taylor Farr and Stephanie Carroll combined to hit seven 3-pointers on 50-percent accuracy from behind the arc in a Blue Division win Thursday, Feb. 16 in Kansas City, Mo.
Platte County finished with a flourish, scoring 22 points in the fourth quarter. Jaycie Stubbs led the way with three 3s and 13 points to go with seven assists, while Farr (10 points) and Carroll (eight points) hit two 3s apiece in the win.
Winnetonka allowed 17 offensive rebounds for the Pirates — four each for Farr and Walker — leading to 14 second-chance points. Walker also scored eight to go with seven total rebounds.