The Greenville girls definitely had something to prove on Wednesday evening.
The Patriots beat Marion County for the third time this season, this time for their first state championship. Greenville dominated from the opening tip and rolled to a 73-52 victory in the Class A-Public girls final at the Macon Coliseum.
It afforded a bit of revenge. Greenville won the two regular-season meetings between the two teams, but Marion County claimed the Region 4-A title when the teams met for the third time.
“We know we didn’t play our best the last time,” Greenville guard Brittany Davis said. “We had to come out and show them we’re the real deal.”
Davis, a 5-9 point guard who has signed with Mississippi State, led all scorers with 30. Davis didn’t have her best night from the floor, making 5 of 20. But she was able to get to the line often and made 19 of 20 free throws. He added 11 rebounds, three steals, three assists and one blocked shot.
“In my opinion she’s the best girls basketball player in the state. Hands down,” said Greenville coach Waqueisha Tenney. “She dominated inside and out.”
Greenville (28-2) also got 14 points and five rebounds from Shabrica Lewis, 12 points from Jabrika Leslie and eight points and 16 rebounds from Nuriyah Slaton
Marion County (25-6) was led by Torriunna Myers with 15 points and Ashley Whitley, who had seven points and 18 rebounds.
Greenville jumped out to a 10-2 lead and closed the quarter on an 11-5 run to take a 21-10 advantage. The Patriots continued to successfully drive to the basket in the second period and led 43-26 at halftime.
After receiving the championship trophy, the Green girls posed with Ring Pop candies on their fingers.
“The difference in this game was we boxed out, we had less turnovers, we made our free throws, we made our layups,” Tenney said. The Patriots missed 18 free throws and 20 layups in the last meeting, she said. “The difference is we were able to execute and finish our layups, our free throws and play good defense.”