Woodland girls back in finals, seeking school’s first state title
by Joe Medley
jmedley@annistonstar.com
Feb 26, 2013 | 5416 views |  0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Woodland's Leah Strain drives through the Providence Christian defense for two of her 34 points during the AHSAA Final 48 Basketball Championships at the Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Center Tuesday morning. The Bobcats beat Providence Christian 71-54 to advance to the title game Friday. (Photo by Trent Penny/The Anniston Star)
Woodland's Leah Strain drives through the Providence Christian defense for two of her 34 points during the AHSAA Final 48 Basketball Championships at the Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Center Tuesday morning. The Bobcats beat Providence Christian 71-54 to advance to the title game Friday. (Photo by Trent Penny/The Anniston Star)
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BIRMINGHAM — Leah Strain poured in 34 points, and twin cousins Shanna and Shalyn Strain scored 18 and 12, respectively, to lead top-ranked Woodland to a 71-54 victory over Providence Christian in Tuesday’s Class 2A girls state semifinals.

Woodland (33-2) will play the Tanner-Prattville Christian winner in the finals Friday at 9 a.m. in the Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Complex. If Woodland wins, the Bobcats will bring home the school’s first state title in any sport.

“This is something I’ve dreamed of my whole life,” Leah Strain said. “Hopefully, we get it.”

Woodland reached the finals two years ago and lost to Tanner. The school’s football team was state runner-up in 2006, 2004, 1986 and 1968.

Leah and Shalyn Strain led the Bobcats in the first half of Tuesday’s game. Leah scored 26 of Woodland’s 41 points in the half, and Shalyn scored 12 on four 3-pointers as the Bobcats took a 41-34 lead at halftime.

Shanna found the mark in the second half, scoring 15 of her 18 points. She hit all three of her 3-pointers in the second half.

Shanna and Shalyn Strain combined to hit all seven of Woodland’s 3-pointers.

Woodland took control in the third quarter. Shanna Strain’s 3-pointer gave Woodland a 49-39 lead at 5:50, and the Bobcats led by double digits the rest of the way.

Woodland and cruised through the fourth, holding the ball for much of the final three minutes. An Amy Strain free throw gave the Bobcats their biggest lead at 71-52 with 39 seconds left.

Sports Columnist Joe Medley: 256-235-3576. On Twitter @jmedley_star.

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