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Lady Wolfpack howl at win

Posted: November 26, 2014 - 12:11am
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Greenbrier's Destiny Marshall scores against the Lady Wildcats from Laney. The Lady Wolfpack pulled away late to win 56-50.
Greenbrier's Destiny Marshall scores against the Lady Wildcats from Laney. The Lady Wolfpack pulled away late to win 56-50.

Greenbrier coach Stefanie Basinger called it surreal, while seniors Morgan Taylor and Mallory Myers called it one of the best wins in their basketball careers.

In the first day of their Queens of the Court tournament, the Lady Wolfpack matched up against the perennial state title contender Laney Lady Wildcats in their season-opener. The Lady Wildcats finished 29-2 with a trip to the Class AA state semifinals a year ago. No slouches themselves, the Lady Wolfpack reached the state quarterfinals in Class AAAAA in 2014 and began the season with consecutive wins.

The teams traded shots throughout the night and the Lady Wolfpack pulled away late for a 56-50 win.

“That was a state-championship- caliber team and it took everything we had to pull through and beat them,” said Taylor, who led the team with 12 points. “They definitely have a lot of talent over there.”

Laney coach Otis Smart thought the Lady Wolfpack were pretty talented, too.

“It’s an awakening game, it’s the first time we’ve lost to a local team in six years,” said Smart. “They’ve got a good team, hats off to them.”

While Destiny Marshall sat out a chunk of the fourth period with four fouls, she made a difference at the end. The Lady Wolfpack sophomore made a game-changing steal and layup with just under a minute to play that stretched a four-point lead to six with just under a minute to play. After Lady Wildcat Dasha Benjamin scored to cut it to four, Marshall hit two free throws at the end to ice it.

“She (Marshall) came through huge,” said Basinger. “Just her composure, the growth and the maturity that she’s shown has really helped move this team to a different level.”

Both came out with smothering full-court defense, but the Lady Wolfpack started to pull away and led 41-30 after three periods. The Lady Wildcats’ pressure led to turnovers and easy baskets and they cut the lead to 48-47 on a Benjamin layup with 2:45 to play. Marshall responded with a layup to make it 50-47, Janae Simpson hit two free throws and the lead was five, putting the Lady Wildcats in chase mode once more.

While Taylor led the Lady Wolfpack with 12 points and Marshall had 10, other players also contributed. Jennifer McMahan had nine, Mallory Myers and Sydney Grayden each had eight, Simpson finished with seven and Taylore Baker had two.

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