Lady Grizzlies' path to perfection

GRAINGER COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) -- 28 games played. 28 wins.

An astonishing feat.

Yet, not so impossible that Grainger girls' basketball coach Justin Combs didn't view a perfect regular season as unrealistic.

"It's something that we put on our goal sheet early, is to try to win them all," Combs said. "We felt like we could do it. We're very honored to get it done and do something that's never been done before."

The path to perfection came to fruition Friday night when the Lady Grizzlies beat Seymour 52-44 to end the regular season 28-0.

"We were pretty pumped up, knowing that we hadn't ever done it before," guard Tailor Morgan said.

"Breaking a record like that is really big, especially for this team," junior forward Allison Hodge added.

" We've come in and nothing has come real easy for us. We come in and worked everyday."

That hard work, and impressive record, hasn't gone unnoticed.

Hodge recalled an encounter that took place a couple of weeks ago.

She said she was in West Knoxville, wearing a Grainger sweatshirt, and a man came up to her and said, "You guys are number one in the state. I've been keeping up with you guys."

This isn't the first long winning streak for the Lady Grizzlies. They won 28 straight games last year (24 to end the regular season and the first four in the playoffs).

However, that momentum didn't carry the team to the state tournament. Grainger lost to Loudon in the sectionals.

"We went on that big run and we became complacent," Hodge said.

"I think that taught us that that feeling we had last year is not a feeling we want to have this year.

"I think that's something that has fueled our fire this year," Combs said. "It made us come back in the offseason to work hard. We're striving. but there's still a long road ahead."

Just don't be surprised if that road ends in Murfreesboro and a spot in the girls state basketball tournament.


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