RICHMOND, VA (WTKR)- King's Fork had never won a state title in girls basketball entering Thursday. The Bulldogs will go to bed with a trophy to display.
The Dogs jumped out to a big lead and held off a Millbrook comeback attempt, topping the Pioneers, 71-67, to claim the Class 4 state championship at the Siegel Center in Richmond.
"I'm lost for words," said King's Fork head coach Maurice Fofano. "I'm so happy to win my first one, for my kids to win their first one. I'm just so happy."
King's Fork led by four after a quarter and had swelled the advantage to nine by halftime. Despite leading by as many as 12 points, Millbrook trimmed the lead to just two in the fourth quarter, but the Bulldogs were able to hang on down the stretch.
"It was definitely hard work," said sophomore guard Cyriah Griffin. "We definitely ran every day, we pushed ourselves, he yelled at us, fussed at us. We got so much that we had to do to put into this that I'm glad we came out with the win."
Griffin led King's Fork with 12 points and 13 assists. Yasmine Brown scored 15 points, while Niyah Gaston chipped in 13 points. Millbrook put five players in double figures in the losing cause.
The state title is not just the first one in the sport for the school, but the Bulldogs are also the first public school girls hoops team from Suffolk to claim a state crown.
"It pays tribute to the ones that came before me that worked really hard, we were just the ones who were able to get it," Fofano said. "I had a lot of my former players out there that [were] here not too long ago and they couldn't win it, but they were pushing for us to get our first one."