Posted: Wednesday, February 19th 2014 at 12:54am
7-AAA championships: Lady Wolves defense too much for East Hall (VIDEO)
By Jeff Hart Staff
Buford's girls basketball team defeated East Hall for the Region 7-AAA title on Tuesday in Buford. / photo: David McGregor
BUFORD -- When the Buford girls were winning three state titles from 2009-11, offense was the name of the game. If the Lady Wolves are to add a fourth title in six years, they can look to their defense as the reason why this time around.
Buford forced more than two dozen turnovers and held East Hall to single-digit scoring in every quarter in taking an impressive 53-21 win Tuesday in the finals of the Region 7-AAA tournament at the Buford gym.
It was an effort even a stickler like Buford coach Gene Durden had to applaud.
“That was a team that scored 73 (Monday night) and we held them to 17 into the fourth quarter,” Durden said. “They did a great job. The girls take a lot of pride in their defense and really play well together. One of our best efforts.”
Buford next will take on Ringold, the fourth seed from Region 5-AAA. A date and time has yet to be determined. East Hall will play North Murray, the No. 3 seed from 5-AAA, at a day and time to be determined later.
The Lady Wolves (25-2) were in a tough battle for the first nine minutes leading just 9-7 after the first quarter and then falling behind 10-9 on a 3-pointer by the Lady Vikings’ Jatasia Bailey on the first possession of the second quarter.
But led by the defense, Buford went on a 14-2 run over the final 7:42 of the first half and held East Hall to just one Chelsea Dale 3-pointer in the entire third quarter. When the smoke cleared, Buford had put the game out of reach leading 42-15 heading into the final period.
East Hall coach Justin Wheeler, who guided the Lady Vikings to the region title game in his first year, said they could find a silver lining despite the lopsided loss.
“Buford is an excellent team and defensively they are so good,” Wheeler said. “No one traps like they do so we can look and see where we can get better against the best. We’re disappointed we didn’t win the title but I am so proud of the girls for getting this far and fighting. They didn’t give up even after we got way down.”
Region 7-AAA Player of the Year Camille Anderson was the catalyst pouring in 15 points and adding seven steals that led to fastbreak baskets at every opportunity.
It was her basket that gave them the lead for good and she added two assists in the big run to end the first half.
“Camille has been consistent all year and I’m proud of her,” Durden said. “I think a big factor was our depth wore them down. We kept the pressure on in hopes that it would be a factor.”
Bree Horrocks, who was also named to the All-Region team, poured in a game-high 17 points, benefitting from several assists by Anderson and the other guards.
East Hall (14-14) was led by Bailey with seven points. Dale and Ashlyn Ellison each had six points for the Lady Vikings.
DAWSON COUNTY 65
NORTH HALL 50
Dawson County earned the No. 3 seed from Region 7-AAA after a dominating win Tuesday in the consolation game at the Buford High gym.
The Lady Tigers (18-9) opened the game with a 15-5 run and never looked back. They blew the game open early in the second quarter with a 15-0, capped by a three-point play from Sheyenne Seabolt for a 30-8 lead with 4:12 left in the first half.
Seabolt and Ashley Parker both hit 3-pointers in the run. The Lady Trojans cut it to 30-12 but Dawson County closed out of the first half with four straight points and 34-12 lead.
North Hall (18-10) got as close as the final score after both teams put in reserves. The Lady Trojans will be the No. 4 seed from Region 7-AAA.
Ashley Parker paced Dawson County with 21 points, 15 coming in the first half to help the Lady Tigers open up the early lead. Seabolt finished with 17 points, 12 in the first half, and Peyton Porter had eight points for Dawson County.
Sadie Cleveland led North Hall with 18 points. Sydney Cleveland added nine points and Katie Sayers eight for the Lady Trojans.
After the game, the Region 7-AAA All-Region girls team was officially announced. Below are those selected by region coaches:
2013-14 7-AAA Girls All-Region Team
Paige Thomas -- White County
Kaitlyn Duncan -- Banks County
Taylor Kennedy -- Banks County
Hope Cochran -- Fannin County
Ashley Parker -– Dawson County
Sheyenne Seabolt -- Dawson County
Kensi Gillespie -- North Hall
Sydney Cleveland -- North Hall
Jenny Edwards -- East Hall
Corey Staples -- Buford
Bree Horrocks -- Buford
Region 7-AAA Player of the Year:
Camille Anderson -- Buford
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