Shorewood - Shorewood girls basketball coach Jeff Eimers believes in his team enough to know that the Greyhounds' currently encouraging 6-2 overall mark is not just made of castles in the air.
But he's also realistic enough to know that the Greyhounds have not faced the meat of their schedule yet, one that started Tuesday night, with a contest against powerful Pius XI.
"We've been in every single game," he said, "but we know who the really good teams in the Woodland are and we haven't hit our toughest stretch yet. Still, we're happy, very happy, with where we are right now. Good things are happening."
And for good reason, as the Greyhounds kept moving ahead last week with wins over Greendale (48-36) and Greenfield (59-40).
Not fully two years removed from the end of their awful, multi-season losing streak, the Greyhounds have stabilized and legitimized the program. That was demonstrated Friday against Greenfield, where they broke out to a 20-10 first quarter lead and then stretched it out to 34-19 at the break.
The Hustlin' Hawks battled back to cut the margin to six at one point in the second half.
"They actually scored the first eight points of the second half," Eimers said. "Then we were able to right the ship."
Grace Hayes had a personal run of seven straight points including a clutch 3-pointer that took the lead from six to 13 points in the second half. She would lead all scorers with 16 points.
Eimers was pleased with how the team ran the floor and got out on the break. A 1-3-1 defensive set really flustered Greenfield and allowed Shorewood to pick up easy hoops. Robbie Holland contributed 14 points and Jada Stackhouse 11.
The win over Greendale on Dec. 11 was not quite as clean as the Greyhounds would build a lead as great as 10, but then the Panthers would come roaring back.
It was 18-17 Shorewood at the half and 33-32 Greyhounds after three quarters. Only in the fourth quarter, when the Greyhounds went on a 15-4 run were they able to get comfortable.
"We switched from a man defense to a 1-3-1," Eimers said, "and that really shut them down. Holland "Had a very good game," according to Eimers and led all scorers with 17 points.
"And with that, she became the sixth player to lead us in scoring this year," Eimers said. "We've really been waiting for her to come through."
Johnna Odom added 14 and Hayes nine for Shorewood. Eimers is also pleased with the work of the junior varsity team, which is currently sitting at 4-2. The Greyhounds will be at Tosa West on Friday in their final preholiday game of the year.
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