BUFORD — Is it any surprise the Buford girls are headed back to the Class 5A semifinals?
It's become an old habit for the Lady Wolves as they knocked off Carrollton, 58-47, in the quarterfinals of the Class 5A tournament at Buford City Arena on Tuesday.
Carrollton (20-11, Region 7-5A No. 2 seed) wasn't going to make it easy for the defending Class 5A champs, giving coach Gene Durden and his Lady Wolves (29-1, Region 8-5A No. 1 seed) all they could handle for four quarters.
But, ultimately, it was Buford's play in the first half and late in the third quarter that helped the Lady Wolves secure their seventh straight semifinal appearance.
"Listen, we talk about it all the time that sometimes that we got to win a game that's going to be a grind," Durden said. "And tonight was our grind."
Carrollton cut the lead to three points at one point in the third quarter, while beating the Lady Wolves' full-court pressure.
"We were giving up too much easy stuff on the full-court press, so we had to get out of it and go to a half-court game," Durden said. "We know that the press is a tempo changer, but the thing is that, sometimes, we'll have to get back in the half-court and grind it out."
The Lady Wolves did just that after the Lady Trojans cut the lead to three points in the third quarter, taking a 44-33 lead in the final period.
Tate Walters led the Lady Wolves with 16 points, while Ashyia Willis scored 12 and Abbi Perkins had 10.
Buford will play Woodland-Henry at Fort Valley State on Saturday. Game time is set for 2 p.m.