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Myers’ 38 propels Sunshine past Donoho

MONTGOMERY — It did not take Shafontaye Myers long to announce her presence on the way to leading Sunshine (21-1) to a 60-38 win over Donoho in the first round of the Class 1A Central Regional Tournament at Alabama State Monday evening.

Myers, a senior guard and University of Alabama commit, scored 26 of her game-high 38 points in the first half, matching Donoho’s point output for the entire game and extending the Lady Tigers’ season by another game.

“I just came prepared, ready,” Myers said. “I know its my last year, so I’ve got to give it all I’ve got.”

Donoho managed to keep the game close early, cashing in on missed Sunshine opportunities to head into the second quarter down only 18-12. From there, Myers took over. After scoring 11 points in the first quarter, Myers single-handedly outpaced Donoho 15-7 in the second period, pushing Sunshine to a 40-19 halftime advantage.

The scoring outburst marked the fourth straight game Myers has scored at least 38 points. The mark also topped Myers’ 2009 regional tournament performance, a game that saw her score 34 against Donoho in a first round win.

Myers found her scoring complement in long-time friend and fellow senior Johnquesha Childs, who missed all of her junior season with a torn ACL.

“(I was) anxious at first,” Childs said of taking the floor at the Acadome on the campus of Alabama State University. Childs settled in quickly, scoring 16 points and grabbing 10 rebounds in the game.

“We’re going to have to have more people scoring than just Shafontaye and John,” Sunshine head coach Phillip Wagner said of his team’s need to balance out its offense.

The win moves Sunshine to the finals of the region tournament where it will face Akron in a rematch of last season’s Central Regional final.

“It’s hard to beat a team three times in one year,” Wagner said of the task of toppling Akron for a third time this season. “I hope we play better defense Thursday night.”

Sunshine topped Akron twice in the same week back in November with both wins coming by 20 points or more.

“I’ve been at Sunshine 27 years. We’ve got one state championship and three more appearances. This one right here would be a big one,” Wagner said of a potential final four run. “These young ladies deserve a shot at another title.”