RALEIGH — When it came to championship game experience, both Salisbury and East Bladen had it. But when it came to defense and guard play, the Hornets had it all and captured their second consecutive Class 2-A NCHSAA championship Saturday with a 49-37 victory.
"It's all about guard play, and we could not handle their guard play," East Bladen coach Patty Evers said. "We weren't even running an offense. Salisbury is a good team, and we could not handle them."
Salisbury (29-0) led 28-20 at the half and pulled away in the third quarter thanks to its pressure defense. It outscored the Eagles 14-4 and forced eight of East Bladen's 24 turnovers.
Guard Shanequa Phifer captured most valuable player honors with 14 points. Ashia Holmes added 11 points and three steals.
Salisbury shot poorly from the floor (18-of-58) but had 22 offensive rebounds to seven for East Bladen, which shot 10-of-30.
Center Courtney Melvin led all scorers with 17 points and 12 rebounds for East Bladen (29-1). Forward Jazmine Kemp added 13 points.