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SHS girls take care of business against Beach
SHS Basketball
Statesboro sophomore guard Reya Johnson gets off a acrobatic shot over multiple Beach defenders during Wednesdaty's game in Statesboro. - photo by JOSH AUBREY/staff

It may be the Statesboro Gentlemen’s Classic but the Lady Blue Devils once again were able to show off their stuff as well as the No. 6 ranked Lady Devils took out Beach 57-37 Wednesday afternoon at Statesboro High.

The Blue Devils showed a little rust early but finally got their offense going off their pressure defense and pulled away in the second half.

“I think it showed that it has been a little while since we have played,” said Statesboro coach Marty Holder. “Our half-court offense had moments where we looked pretty good, but we want the majority of our offense to come from our defensive pressure and forcing teams to turn it over.”

Statesboro had trouble pulling away from the Lady Bulldogs through most of the first half. The Blue Devils went on a 9-1 run in the second quarter to pull up 20-9 on a steal and a layup by Demia Hartwell. The Bulldogs were able to chip away at the lead by finding success in the paint and the two teams went into the half with Statesboro leading 27-13.

I feel like during the holidays it’s important to knock some of the rust off,” said Holder. “I feel like we were able to do that starting in the second quarter and carried it into the second half.”

In the second half the Blue Devils were able to maintain a comfortable 15-point lead for most of the half with balanced scoring. Terrika Gibson had 11 of her team high 16 points in the second half while Madison Lee added six points and Reya Johnson had four points and four assists.

“Our main goal tonight was to try and improve our pressure defense which I feel we accomplished,” said Holder. “We have tried to press a little more than usual in the past few games to try and get that temp back and ready for region play.”

I really felt like Malaya Dekle played her butt off tonight even though it may not show in the scoring column,” said Holder. “Autumn Grace is another undersized post player who has been playing tough. Our sophomores Reya Johnson and Kayley Wedlow are both improving day in and day out. Reya has been solid since the summer and Kayley is giving us instant offense and is a deadly three-point shooter.”

Gibson led the Blue Devils with 16 points while Wedlow added 11. Amiya Pretty led Beach with 10 points. With the win the Blue Devils improve to 12-0 on the season. Up next Statesboro will travel to Augusta to take on Grovetown at 7:00 at Evans High School.