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Basketball: Norcross girls dismantle South
Cooper pours in 28 points in Lady Blue Devils' victory
South Forsyths Sarah Myers puts up a shot between Norcross defenders on Wednesday at Norcross High School. - photo by Autumn Vetter

NORCROSS — Norcross wasn’t about to let South Forsyth ruin its playoff plans.

The No. 3-ranked Lady Blue Devils made short work of South in an 80-32 victory in the first round of the Class 6A state tournament on Wednesday at Norcross.

Shayla Cooper, a Georgetown commit, did almost anything she pleased on the court (28 points, 7 rebounds, 6 steals, 4 assists) while teammate and North Carolina commit Diamond DeShields tallied 19 points and five steals. Sydney Marshall also chipped in with 13 points and 14 rebounds for the Lady Blue Devils (20-4).

South’s Rachel Myers paced the team with 12 points and sister Sarah Myers added 10.

"[We] played a top-50 team in the nation," South head coach Keith Gravitt said. "They had some seniors on the team that have a lot of experience. They’ve been tried and true, but I’m proud of our girls.

"I’m proud of the accomplishments they’ve made this year and getting to this point and [getting] this experience now."

Marshall scored eight of her 13 points in the first quarter, as Norcross raced out to a 24-4 lead.

The Lady War Eagles (20-9) did a better job containing Marshall, but allowed Cooper to score 10 points, all of which came on easy shots in the lane, and guided Norcross to a 40-12 halftime score.

" … We took some good shots that didn’t happen to go in," Gravitt said. "We got the type of shots that we wanted to get, but they were taking control of the boards and getting the ball in the paint too easily."

The Lady Blue Devils continued to pour it on and led 60-25 to end the third quarter before winning by 48.

Norcross finished the game shooting (34-of-64) 53 percent, while South was held to (13-of-51) 25 percent.

"My hope would be that our players see [a quality team like Norcross] and say that’s something we want to be able to do," Gravitt said, "to be able to advance and play at that level."