Greeneville’s Lady Greene Devils rode a career night from junior Anna Shaw into the Region 1-AAA semifinals with a 79-37 victory over Sullivan East on Friday night at Hal Henard in the tournament’s opening round.
Both teams got off to a slow start in the first couple of minutes with the Lady Patriots holding a slight advantage. That’s when Shaw took over, forcing three straight turnovers that she converted into easy scores, and Greeneville never looked back.
“Anna Shaw just took over the game. Layup, after layup, after layup… she’s really hard to contain when she gets going,” said Greeneville coach Annette Watts. “That’s Anna’s game. She likes to take it away from you and shoot a layup. It’s her way of saying, ‘look what I can do,’ but she also had a couple of threes. Anna’s game has come a long, long way this year. I feel like she’s having fun and playing some really good ball.”
Shaw wound up scoring 22 points in the first half alone and finished the night with 26, easily bypassing her previous career best of 17 points.
Chloe Marsh had 13, including 11 in the second half, but it was Marsh’s defense that made the most difference. Greeneville set out to limit Sullivan East’s Jenna Hare. While Hare finished the night with 24, the rest of the Lady Patriots (12-23) were held to four combined field goals and 11 combined points.
“I can’t say enough about Chloe Marsh,” Watts said. “Defensively, I thought tonight was really good. Jenna Hare is a very, very good player, but I think Chloe did a really great job on her. Our game plan was to limit her as much as we could. I thought defensively we did a really good job. I thought Chloe did so many good things.”
The Lady Devils led 28-12 at the end of the first quarter and were out front 51-23 by halftime.
Watts said it was a solid team effort.
“The rest of our team really stepped up and knocked down shots and did some really great things,” she added.
Lauren Bailey scored 11, Tambryn Ellenburg had 10, and Dalaina Martin scored 7.
The win is Greeneville’s 25th of the season, and the Lady Devils will play at Elizabethton on Monday night at 7:30 against Cocke County. Cocke County best Unicoi County 69-60 on Friday.
Watts said Friday’s win was a nice way to open the region tournament, but Greeneville has to build on it, not rest.
“We know that every game is going to be tough” the coach said. “We know from here on out, you have to bring your A game every night. We just have to focus on one game at a time. We cannot be looking over anybody. We didn’t look over Sullivan East. I thought we came out very focused and ready to play. From here out, it’s going to be a tough row to hoe, but my kids will be ready.”