Sunday, March 11, 2018

Going For Gold: The State Championship

MURFREESBORO, TN- The stage was set for both the Greenfield Lady Jackets (34-2) and Summertown Lady Eagles (32-3) Saturday afternoon as they jogged onto the Murphy Center floor for the last time and for the ultimate prize, the Class A State Championship title.
Neither team in school history had ever made it to this point of the TSSAA Blue Cross Girls State Basketball Tournament, but man, both teams laid it all on the line for their school, community, and town they represented. 

One side of Mante Hale Arena was covered in Orange and Black, the other Blue and White. The game started out a little slow for both teams. However, at the end of the first quarter, the Lady Jackets of Greenfield led 12-10.

The Summertown "Mess" ready to cheer on the Lady Eagles.

The Lady Eagles of Summertown showed why there were ranked #1 in the last Associated Press poll as they caused the Lady Jackets to turn the ball over on back to back possessions and were able to capitalize from behind the arc going 3-of-6 and 5-for-11 from the field in the second quarter.

Greenfield, however, could not get the ball in the bucket as they went 2-of-9 from the field and 1-of-6 from three point land. At the half the scoreboard read:

Summertown- 23  Greenfield- 17

The ultimate prize: The Gold Ball

Coming back out in the second half, both teams went back and forth but the Lady Jackets knocked down their free throws going 7-of-7 from the charity stripe as they got to within one point of the Lady Eagles of Summertown at the end of the third quarter, 29-28. 

The Lady Jackets came out hitting back to back three point shots and the Lady Eagles turned the ball over on a number of occasions as Greenfield was able to turn those turnovers into points. Free Throw's were a big key in the game as the Lady Jackets went 15-of-18 from the line, while the Lady Eagles went 2-of-6, respectively. 

As the clock continued to wind down, both coaches put in their bench players to get a taste of the State Championship game and the Lady Jackets of Greenfield were able to hang on and win their first Class A Girls State Championship in school history 47-39. 

Class A State Champion Greenfield Lady Jackets. photo courtesy of Burt Staggs

The Summertown Lady Eagles had eight seniors on the team, but they set the bar for the next crop of Lady Eagles that want to make it to the State Championship game one day again and this time, win their first State Title.

The crowds for both Summertown and Greenfield were very passionate and loud as they cheered on their teams on Saturday afternoon at Murphy Center. It was a great week of ballgames as Riverdale won their third straight title 77-50 over Houston. In the last game of the week Upperman defeated District 8AA foe Macon County for the fifth time of the season, (twice in a season, District Championship, Region Championship, and State Championship.) 64-62 in overtime.

What a week of basketball in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. If everyone thought this week was fun, just wait until next week on Wednesday, March 14th at the same place at 10 A.M. the Blue Cross Boys State Basketball Tournament begins.

Now, that story can wait another week. This week is all about these young ladies that came out and played with every ounce of passion and pride that they had and left it all on the court. Congratulations to all the participants that made it to the Glass House. See you again next year.