Tiffany Huddleston scored 12 points for Starkville Academy on Saturday. (Photo by Lee Adams, SDN file photo)
CLINTON â€“ For a team to win a championship, there is usually an unbelievable effort by one player.
Tiffany Huddleston was that player in Starkville Academy's 50-39 victory over Madison-Ridgeland Academy in the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools Overall Championship.
She scored 12 points, with eight of those coming on consecutive trips down the court late in the fourth quarter when the Lady Vols needed it the most.
"She has been a factor off the bench all year," SA head coach Glenn Schmidt said. "All year long, it has been somebody off the bench. This week it was Tiff and Julianne. Tiffany's eight-straight points was a huge boost for us."
Senior Anna Prestridge was not surprised by Huddleston's performance.
"She is so quick," Prestridge said. "She can steal the ball and lay it up without even thinking about it. She had those opportunities during the game. She got those steals and layups and it helped us out tremendously."
Huddleston scored four points off of two steals. She converted those into easy layups.
"She really helped us out," Junior Anna Lea Little said. "They couldn't stop her on those layups and she made some really good shots."
Huddleston's play in the fourth quarter seemed to spark the rest of her teammates and secured a win for the Lady Vols.
"She stepped up and played real good for us," sophomore Sallie Kate Richardson said. "She got a couple of steals and that helped us push a little harder. That's what got us going."
Huddleston scored 14 points in their first round game against Bowling Green, La. She also sparked the win in the Class AAA, Division II championship against East Rankin.
She was selected to the All-Tournament team and it was well deserved.
"It's really exciting," Huddleston said. "It's a big honor."
Huddleston may have sparked the run, but she is glad her team won and their hard work payed off.
"Unbelievable," Huddleston said of winning three state championships. "It feels like everything is starting to pay off."
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