NE Regional: Huntsville girls win Birmingham trip in 6A
by Brandon Miller
bmiller@annistonstar.com
Feb 22, 2013 | 2603 views |  0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
JACKSONVILLE — Tournament most valuable player Shaquera Wade had 15 points and 19 rebounds to lead Huntsville to a 60-46 win over Shades Valley in the Class 6A Northeast Regional girls final today at Jacksonville State.

Ta’Naisha Hill added 19 points as Huntsville advanced to the 6A state semifinals next week in Birmingham.

"I’m just overjoyed right now,” first-year Huntsville coach Krystle Johnson said. “We’ve had team goals as far as per game, but we didn’t start talking about (going to the state semifinals). I’ve only known them since July.”

A late third-quarter run gave Huntsville the lift it needed. Taking a two-point lead with 55 seconds left, the Panthers extended that to eight, puncuated by a jumper at the buzzer by Wade. With 53.8-percent shooting in the second half, Huntsville’s lead hovered around double digits for the remainder of the game.

“We were never satisfied,” Anna Strong said. “A lot of people said we don’t deserve to be here. We worked hard, and we worked hard throughout the whole season. I think we deserved to be here, and I think we just proved a lot today.”

Huntsville will face Blount, the winner of the South Regional, on Thursday at 9 a.m. at the BJCC Arena.

Brandon Miller covers prep sports for The Star. He can be reached at 256-235-3575 or follow him on Twitter @bmiller_star