Slow starts plagued the Surry Lady Patriots in their attempt to regain the N.C. Home Educators Athletic Commission state championship last week in Greensboro.
While Surry did beat four other local high school-level basketball teams to its state Final Four, the Lady Patriots fell 63-51 to eventual state champion North Wake on Feb. 24 in a NCHEAC semifinal game in Greensboro.
“We just came out really flat that day,” said Surry coach Todd Hill. “Really, we did in all of our last three games. Against North Wake, we got way behind and didn’t adjust to their man defense very well. We got to them in the second half, but we weren’t able to catch up.”
Surry (19-13 overall) also had problems containing the Storm’s transition game, with Hill stating that North Wake scored 18 points just on easy baskets in the running game.
“You can’t give that many points up and expect to win a game,” he said.
The Lady Patriots had played in the NCHEAC West Regional Tournament the week before, needing a top-two finish for an invite to the state championships. Surry, which had won the conference outright during the regular season, was the top seed for the regional at Salem Baptist Community School in Winston-Salem. In Feb. 17, the Lady Patriots punched their ticket to state with a 44-38 win over Asheville. However, the next day, another slow start doomed Surry, which lost 41-26 to Cabarrus, the team they had beaten twice during the regular season.
Ultimately, the Stallions also advanced to the state championship game a week later, but lost 38-36 to North Wake on Feb. 25.
Surry’s season, like those of many other homeschool teams, will continue well into March, but the NCHEAC has already announced its honorees. Lady Patriots Krissa Hill, Jill Boyd, Amelia Cox and Jenny Brown all earned all-conference honors, and a fifth Surry player, Lydia Clayton, was named to the all-regional tournament and all-state tournament teams. Hill was also on the all-regional team.
The Lady Patriots’ season continues this week with games against Blue Ridge Home Educators and State Line. Those games are tune-ups for another major tournament, the annual East Coast Basketball Championships, which will take place from March 13-17 at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va.
Reach John via Twitter at @johncate73.