Dillard High School Lady Panthers Basketball Team

Congressman Alcee L. Hastings made the following statement on the House floor on March 7, 2012, congratulating the Dillard High School girls' basketball team on their third consecutive state title:

M. Speaker, I rise today to congratulate the Lady Panthers girls' basketball team of Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on their recent state championship. Once again, under the inspiring leadership of Coach Marcia Pinder, the women's varsity basketball team won the Class 5A state title. The game was hard fought on both sides but even under intense pressure, the women of Dillard High persevered to defeat St. Johns Bartram Trail. With staunch defense and discipline this team made history by clinching their third consecutive state title and seventh title overall.

Capping off a 26-4 season, the title recently secured by the Dillard team is truly special. This third consecutive state title is a record for Dillard High, and makes their winning streak the second longest in Broward history and one title away from tying the County record of four consecutive titles. Furthermore, with their seventh state championship overall, the Lady panthers hold the record for the most titles held by any girls' basketball program in Broward County, and makes them the second most winningest team in the state. Furthermore, they are just one championship behind the current record holders Jacksonville Ribault.

It should also be noted that all seven championships have come under the leadership of Coach Marcia Pinder, whose 804-175 record makes her the all-time winningest basketball coach overall in Florida's history. Following this recent championship, Coach Pinder was named the 2012 Russell Athletic/Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) National High School Coach of the Year. She will be honored at the 2012 WBCA High School All-American Game that is played in conjunction with the NCAA Women's Final Four in Denver, Colorado on March 31, 2012.

I would like to take the time to honor each player and coach who, along with Coach Pinder, made this record-setting win possible. The Championship Lady Panthers are: LaQuacious Adams, Alliyah Anderson, Shatorria Baker, Demetria Brown, Ja' Coretah Clayton, Brianna Green, Amber Hanna, Dominique Harris, Kareese Johnson, Jessica Jones, Macy Keen, Courtney Parson, Tiara Walker, and Kayla Wright. The Lady Panthers and Coach Pinder and their championship season were also supported by assistant coaches: George Adams, Brandon Adams, Tonia Adams, Tania Miller, Evelyn Powers, Enewetok Ramsey, and Chanell Washington. I would also like to recognize Dillard High Principal Casandra D. Robinson and Athletic Director Tracie Latimer, without whom the girls' basketball program would not be given the support it rightly deserves.

M. Speaker, I am extremely proud of the Lady Panthers, Coach Pinder, and all of their supporters who every year continue to push the bounds for what is possible within their sport. I am truly honored to represent such gracious sportswomen, and look forward to next season where I hope to see the Lady Panthers tie both the Broward County's record for most consecutive championships and Florida's record for most titles overall.