Heating up: Lady Eagles turn up the heat in the second half and defeat Elba 49-43 in area tournament
Published 3:00 am Tuesday, February 9, 2016
Led by freshman Bre Griffin’s 28 points, the top seeded Goshen Lady Eagles defeated Elba 49-43 in the first round of the Class 2A Area 5 tournament.
With the win the Eagles claim a spot in the championship against New Brockton as well as a spot in the sub-regional tournament, which starts next week.
“Elba came ready to play,” said Eagles head coach Fred Lowery. “They came in with a game plan and they executed.”
The top seeded Eagles came out sluggish in the first half and missed several opportunities to knock down open shots in the lane. “We had a lot of missed layups,” Lowery said. “We had some major turnovers tonight. I think the girls had some anxiety since it was a must win game.”
The Tigers held a six points lead at the end of the first quarter, and the Eagles were down by as many as nine points in the second quarter. However, Griffin’s play kept the Eagles in the game, as she scored 12 points in the first half. By halftime, the Eagles were down 29-21.
Lowery told his players to come out in the third period and turn up the heat, and they outscored the Tigers 15-6.
“They played much better in the second half,” Lowery said. “They turned up the heat. We went to a full court press and created some turnovers.”
The Eagles took their first lead of the game since at the end of the third quarter when Casey Allen scored with 20 seconds left.
The Eagles extended their lead in the final quarter and eliminated the fourth-seeded Tigers.
The Eagles and the New Brockton Gamecocks will tip off the championship game at 7 p.m. Thursday.