LaGrange captures first state title behind Warren’s 17 points

LaGrange won its first girls basketball state championship with a suffocating 46-31 win over two-time defending champion Warren Easton in the Class 4A state championship game Saturday night at Burton Coliseum.

The Gators (32-4) never trailed and came out strong with an 11-3 run.

Easton (22-11) scored the next six points to get within 11-9, but LaGrange went on a 10-2 run to take control.

Easton scored on consecutive possessions twice in the game and shot 27 percent from the floor. The Eagles didn’t reach double-digit points in any quarter.

LaGrange wasn’t much better at 31 percent, but pieced together enough points to get the job done.

Jeriah Warren led the way with 17 points while Alona Gray added 13. Warren also paced the Gators defense with a block and five steals. She was named the game’s Most Outstanding Player.

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><em><strong>See more photos</strong></em>&nbsp;from the girls’&nbsp;<strong>LHSAA State Tournament</strong>&nbsp;at&nbsp;<a href="https://www.americanpress.com/photos/" target="_blank">americanpress.com/photos</a>&nbsp;or&nbsp;<a href="https://photos.americanpress.com/" target="_blank">photos.americanpress.com</a></p>” id=”02f34379-6cfc-4382-806e-df5d8434a62b” style-type=”quote” title=”Pull Quote” type=”relcontent”}}

“I was frustrated with myself at halftime because my shot wasn’t falling,” Warren said. “I just told myself to be patient and take my time when I got to the basket.”

Deja Tanks had eight points and nine rebounds in the first half, with six of the rebounds coming on the offensive end. Three of her four baskets came on putbacks after grabbing an offensive rebound.

Warren Easton shot 25 percent in the first half, including 1 of 12 on 3-pointers, and turned the ball over nine times as LaGrange built a 22-14 halftime lead.

Tanks finished with eight points and 15 rebounds.

Breanna Sullon led Easton with 10 points and seven rebounds.

Gray was the lone player from either team to shoot better than 50 percent from the floor, making five of her eight field goal attempts.

“I still can’t believe it,” LaGrange head coach La’Keem Holmes said. “They deserve it. They’ve been working hard for six months, and that doesn’t include summer workouts or weights. They did it as a team. Sometimes it was Aasia Sam or Jeriah carrying the team, sometimes it was Nadailyn Carrier and Deja. This week we asked Alanna Stevens to face guard the best opposing player across a college court and she was great. It was a team effort, being great in their roles.”See more photos from the girls’ LHSAA State Tournament at americanpress.com/photos or photos.americanpress.com

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