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Prep Basketball Notepad: Eagles play down winning streak

With a 4–0 Commonwealth District record this season, Colonial Forge’s girls basketball team has won 23 consecutive games against district opponents dating back to 2011.

It’s an impressive streak, but Eagles coach Michelle Darley doesn’t want it getting in the way of her team’s ultimate goals.

“I really try to avoid talking about streaks as much as I can,” Darley said. “It’s tough to dominate any district, but we look at it like, ‘OK, we need to get a little further in regional play.’ We are literally trying to better ourselves to be a better team.”

Colonial Forge (4–1, 4–0) hasn’t lost to a district opponent since the 2010–11 tournament championship game against Mountain View, and Darley said her team hasn’t lost a regular-season district game since January of 2010.

The Eagles, who last season went 16–0 in Commonwealth District regular-season play and swept their three opponents in the district tournament, have lost just once this season, in overtime against non-district foe Potomac.

Though it lost four seniors from last year’s team, Colonial Forge is primed for another strong season.

The Eagles’ success does not depend on one or two players. Post player Jahla Osborne and guards Kenya Holland, Nichole Collins and Nia Washington, a freshman, have all taken turns starring this season.

“I think that’s what makes us so good is that there’s no one player that’s really just standing out,” Darley said.

Colonial Forge, which visits Franklin County tonight, is one of two Commonwealth teams with unblemished district marks. The other is Massaponax (6–2, 5–0), which has started the season fast thanks to a positive attitude by a group of players that includes only two seniors (post player Brianne Comden and point guard Patrice Hounshell), plus two sophomores and five freshmen.

“Just the whole aura of the team this year is about hard work and taking each game as it comes,” Panthers coach Adam Brown said.

Brown can attest to how hard it is to win five straight games in district play, let alone 23 as Colonial Forge has done.

“That is phenomenal,” Brown said. “It’ll be tough for any team in the area to beat them.”

—Nathan Warters