Bridge City and Orangefield Little Dribblers Win Championships
Last updated 4/25/2022 at 12:37am
The Bridge City Little Dribblers and Orangefield Little Dribblers won three national championships on Saturday, April 16, in Franklin, Texas. The Bridge City girls won the Major Girls Division, the Orangefield boys won the Major Boys Division, and the Bridge City boys won the Senior Boys Division.
The Bridge City girls won all four of their games in the tournament played over four days outscoring their opponents by 37 points in the four games combined becoming the first Little Dribblers team from Bridge City to place in the national tournament.
Bridge City won its opening game of the tournament 29-13 against Madisonville. A nailbiter followed as the girls from Bridge City edged Brownsboro 20-17 to earn a spot in the semi-finals.
Defending champion Canton was the opponent in the semis, and Bridge City had its highest scoring game of the tournament winning 35-23 to make it to the finals. The championship game turned out to be a rematch as Canton advanced through the losers’ bracket to play Bridge City again. The score was a little closer, but Bridge City prevailed 23-17 to win the Major Girls Division championship.
The team is made up of eleven girls in the fifth and sixth grades, ages 11 and 12 years old. Their head coach is Jerry Wiegreffe and the assistant coaches are Jason Putnam and Hunter Wiegreffe.
The coaches worked with their girls to be tough defenders. “The girls just play really great defense. We don’t give up a whole lot of points. Looking at our team we’re not real big or intimidating, but the girls just get after it,” Jerry Wiegreffe described.
Kendal Krailo and Naryiah Wiegreffe were the two post and leading rebounders for the Bridge City girls doing a really good job of controlling the boards. Two of the quickest girls on the team are Khylie Chance and Rylee Hebert who led the Bridge City Little Dribblers in steals.
Coach Wiegreffe said he and the other coaches emphasized passing the ball to get good shots which led to their success for the girls from Bridge City who were very team oriented. “That’s kind of difficult to find these days with any basketball team especially in younger players, but they bought into the system of finding the open girl, next teammate up, and it worked as they did a good job of passing the ball around and that’s tough to defend,” Wiegreffe explained.
For the All Star Season the Bridge City Little Dribblers were undefeated going 19-0 and outscoring their opponents 523 to 218. The leading scorer was Kenlee Moye averaging 6 points a game. Four other girls Kendal Krailo, Naryiah Wiegreffe, Rylee Hebert, and Parker Dishon averaged at least 3.5 points a game.
Wiegreffe indicated the team does not have just one player that stands out offensively. “Through all those games there were eight different girls that were the top scorer throughout those games, we spread it around,” Wiegreffe reminded.
The girls that comprise the champion Bridge City Little Dribblers are: Rylee Hebert; Kendal Krailo; Lizzie Livingston; Brooklyn Mahana; Kapri Fredeck; Kenlee Putnam; Naryiah Wiegreffe; Parker Dishon; Kenley Moye; Khylie Chance, and Chandler Ritchey who is the only girl who will be eligible to return for next year’s team.
The Orangefield boys played in the Major Boys Division where they lost a second round game against Madisonville and then needed to win four games in the losers bracket to advance to the finals. The Orangefield Little Dribblers did exactly that and then played Madisonville again defeating them in the championship game.
The Bridge City boys competed in the Boys Senior Division. The boys from Bridge City defeated Levelland, Madisonville, and Silsbee to advance to the finals. The championship game was a rematch against Madisonville which the Bridge City boys won to claim the national title for the Boys Senior Division.