The Shaw High School Lady Hawks have been playing well at the right time.
After going 9-15 in their first 24 games, the Lady Hawks (15-16) have won four in a row and six of their last seven contests.
During this run, Shaw won the Region 6-1A Championship and their first two playoff games to advance to the quarterfinals of the 1A State Playoffs.
On Thursday night, the Lady Hawks will look to continue their quest for a state championship as they take on the Sacred Heart Lady Crusaders (16-11) in the quarterfinals at Pearl River Community College in Poplarville at 7 p.m.
The Lady Hawks have been able to advance to the quarterfinals with just one senior, one junior and the rest being sophomores, freshmen and eighth graders.
Shaw head girls basketball coach Ricky Lunford has been pleased with the way the girls have found their rhythm.
“We’ve had a long road as ninth and 10th graders learning to play together,” Lunford said. “They’ve found their chemistry, and they’ve gotten more mature. We’ve been working on the areas we’re weak in on offense and defense. As a whole, the moral is up. The girls have a lot of confidence. I’ve got confidence in the girls to win and advance.”
According to Lunford, the team has to force Sacred Heart out of its game plan to have a chance at victory.
“They like to play half court ball, and they don’t like to run the floor,” Lunford said. “Our goal is to force them out of their comfort zone and not let them hang around.”
Sophomore Katelyn Coleman (17.2 ppg., 3.9 apg., 3.3 rpg.), freshman guard Shakenya Cooper (9 ppg., 3.1 rpg., 2.1 apg.) and sophomore forward Zoe Feltson (7.6 ppg., 9.3 rpg.) have spearheaded the Lady Hawks.
The winner of the Shaw-Sacred Heart game will take on the winner of the Baldwyn-Ingomar game in the semifinals on Monday at 9 a.m. at the Mississippi Coliseum in Jackson.