Prep Playoffs: Eagles look strong in second round blowout
With their entire starting five back from last season, East Davidson was marked as a team that could challenge for the 2-A state basketball title. They certainly looked like a contender Wednesday evening in the second round of the NCHSAA state playoffs.
Two nights after an unimpressive win in the opening round, the third-seeded Lady Golden Eagles put on a display of exceptional basketball for its home fans. No. 14 seed Monroe had a front row seat for the performance, watching their season end in a 75-41 blowout. East advances to Friday's third round where Wilkes Central awaits.
It was an all around team effort led by sophomore sensation Bayley Plummer, who scored 26 points, corralled 20 rebounds and blocked seven shots. Lori Morgan and Jennifer Welborn added 11 points each, while Taylor Bell tossed in 10.
“We were focused tonight,” said East coach Don Corry. “We have been talking about getting to this point of the year, getting focused and playing ball. They did not want to go home tonight.”
East was in control right from the tip-off, scoring five seconds in on a driving layup by Morgan. The lead would reach 10 on the heels of a 3-pointer by Bell in the corner, as the Eagles took a 19-10 lead after one period.
East was only getting warmed up in the first eight minutes.
The Eagles scored the first seven points of the second quarter to go up 16. With 6-footer Zasha Barrett out of the middle after picking up a third foul in the first quarter, East scored a majority of their baskets in the paint. Scoring on a putback with three seconds left, Plummer sent EDHS into the locker room with a 36-16 lead.
“We played great defense and played as a team,” said Corry. “We executed what we talked about in practice.”
Monroe's Asha Jordan (25 points) did everything she could to keep the Redhawks in the game. Of the 25 points scored by Monroe second half, 20 of them belonged to Jordan.
“We had some game film that we watched and knew exactly what they wanted to do,” Corry said. “No. 22 is a heckuva ball player. I thought we did a great job on her and she still scored a lot.”
While Jordan was not receiving much help from her teammates, East was getting production up and down its lineup. Ahead 44-23 midway through the third, the Eagles closed the quarter on a 11-0 run to put the game out of reach.
Sports Editor Zach Kepley can be reached at 888-3631, or email@example.com.