GREENSWARD Academy has added double basketball success to boost its growing national profile.
The Hockley school’s girls team scooped under-15 and under-16 titles after battling through to a final fours showdown.
The under-16s travelled to East London to take on Stockport’s Reddish Vale in the semi-final. Greensward crushed their opponents, taking a 40-12 lead into half-time and securing a 64-46 win overall.
In the final they faced St John’s Academy, from Wiltshire, and it was again the Essex side who stamped their authority on to the game in the early stages, taking a 30-8 lead in the first-quarter.
In Megan Jones, Abigale Miloslawer, Sophie Kay & Kate Vaughan final appearances for the team it was Zoe Willis who led the way with 12 points, supported by Jones (nine) and Amber Evans (seven).
The second quarter saw Greensward add 28 points to their total and take a 58-15 lead into half-time and cruised to a comfortable win (96-39) taking a massive 57 point success and win their second national title in three years.
Captain Megan Jones also lifted the final’s most valuable player award after scoring 30 points.
The under-15s travelled to Nottingham to take on Aylesbury in the semi-final and, despite a slow start, Greensward ended the half leading 29-7 and running out 58-24 winners overall.
The Hockley school took on Reddish Vale, who were out for revenge after Greensward beat them in the under-16 semi-final, in the showpiece.
Greensward took a 21-15 lead into the second quarter and a six point lead into half-time after both sides scored 14 points in the second period. Reddish Vale tried to close down danger woman Zoe Willis and were successful, closing the lead to a mere point by end of the third quarter.
However Willis, supported well by Chelsea Locke and Rhian Simpson, took the initiative and went on to win 72-65.
Head of PE Chris Butterworth, who assisted coach Mr Stevenson at the finals, said: “In previous years we have been undoubtedly the strongest team and the favourites, today however you could argue that we were not.
“It took an incredible effort from each and every single player to win today, a tremendous achievement.”