March 3 – SALUDA 61, SILVER BLUFF 41
The tip end result could not dampen Chasen Redd’s pleasure following Wednesday’s Class AA Ladies’s Basketball Championship on the USC Aiken Convocation Middle.
He knew his seventh Silver Bluff Woman Bulldogs had been upset and disenchanted with their 61-41 loss to third-placed Saluda, however he advised them to carry their heads up and keep calm – as tough because it could possibly be.
There have been no doubts, no regrets, no purpose to be mad at his gamers when this system first appeared for this system title. Their technique to include Class AA Participant of the Yr Kalisha Hill simply did not work – regardless of how they defended it. She had 34 factors and 20 rebounds and resumed play as soon as it appeared like Silver Bluff discovered momentum.
“I am so glad we acquired right here. Nobody can say we’re not top-of-the-line ladies at school AA,” stated Redd. “I believe we proved it by reaching the state championship. They positioned us eighth within the standings all 12 months, and we completed No. 2. I’ve to offer Saluda, the coach all of the credit score. (Jeanette) Wilder, Kalisha. Hill. Nice participant, nice group. We won’t wait to return again. “
The Woman Bulldogs (11-2) rapidly dug right into a deep gap, dropping a 14-0 run to start out the sport. Area 5-AA Participant of the Yr Kalyn Glover Bucket with 2:20 left within the first quarter was the sport opener for Silver Bluff, and the Woman Bulldogs adopted 17-6 after the opening 8 minutes .
Saluda’s Tiara Daniels 3 factors in a row pressured Silver Bluff to change protection. The plan was, realizing that Saluda wasn’t a terrific leaping capturing group, to settle into an space and double-team to attempt to make her uncomfortable. This needed to be adjusted as soon as these 3 dropped, and Hill took benefit.
Saluda’s (15-0) lead got here again to 14 after a 7-0 run halfway by the second quarter, after which Silver Bluff was in a position to do the issues which have led to a lot success this season.
The Woman Bulldogs pressured turnovers, caught rebounds, scored on the opposite finish and made it to the free throw line – in doing so, they diminished their deficit to 30-24 at halftime.
“We dug that gap. Within the second quarter we had a push. We fought,” stated Redd. “… We made some changes. We tried to restrict (Hill) time and again. She’s gifted. I will say it once more. Credit score goes to Saluda. We tried to regulate, transfer and overtake. . We did every little thing we may to get her out of her second, however she was nonetheless in a position to do her job. “
Hill took over within the third quarter, scoring Saluda’s first 13 factors because the Tigers pushed again their result in 12 earlier than the fourth.
“She’s an excellent participant. I stated that once I got here in. She’s a hell of a participant. I give her all of the credit score,” stated Redd. “We tried to do every little thing we may to combine issues up and provides her totally different seems to be, and she or he was all the time in a position to put buckets on us. We tried.”
Making the comeback from that deficit harder was the truth that Glover was caught on the bench after touchdown his fourth foul with 5:22 left within the third quarter. Saluda went on an 11-5 run after taking a 45-33 lead.
The Woman Bulldogs reached seven factors within the fourth quarter, however the Tigers pulled away to win their first-ever state championship.
Aaliyah Lawrence had 14 factors, 12 rebounds and 4 blocks, and Glover had 10 factors. Silver Bluff shot simply 23.6 p.c from the bottom and compelled 20 turnovers, but additionally gave the ball 17 instances and was handed by 11.
The loss was Silver Bluff’s first since early December, and the Woman Bulldogs had been dominant on their solution to a Area 5-AA title. Their first two playoff wins had been additionally blasts regardless of ready 19 days after their common season ended, after which they contained each Philip Simmons State Guardsmen to win the Decrease State Championship for the primary time. instances of historical past.
Glover is the one senior on a younger squad, leaving Redd as optimistic as he was final 12 months when he stated this squad is able to a deep run.
“I actually assume we will probably be again,” he stated. “… I do know they’re upset, however they made it to the state championship. I am happy with them. I am not mad at them. We may have carried out a variety of issues higher, but it surely was is the final sport. They did what they needed to do. They gave me every little thing, and that is all I can ask for as a coach. “