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Girls Athlete of the Week: Dawson County's Sheyenne Seabolt

POSTED: February 25, 2013 9:29 p.m.

Sheyenne Seabolt always had the potential to be a star for the Dawson County girls' basketball team, all she had to do was start believing it.

Seabolt played on the Lady Tigers' varsity team last year as a freshman and got valuable experience, but not even hours of practice or playing for travel teams in the summer could give her the spark she needed to catch fire for Dawson County.

"I believe the fact that she is believing in herself and knowing that she can has made her strong on the inside," said Lady Tigers coach Steve Sweat.

"She has matured. She's a really good post player. One of the things that has helped her is her concentration and her hands. She catches the ball and is able to do something with it."

Seabolt has consistently been one of the Lady Tigers' leading scorers this season but has truly hit her groove in a time when Dawson County needs it the most. Last week, in the Class AAA state playoffs, she tallied 18 points in a first-round win against Blessed Trinity on Tuesday and led her team once again with 16 points and seven rebounds in a win against North Oconee on Friday.

For her efforts, Seabolt is The Times Girls Athlete of the Week.

Sweat said one of the things that helps Seabolt and his team the most is the girls' chemistry. Seabolt and point guard Carly Gilreath work together seamlessly to put up points for Dawson County.

"I think it's been one of those deals where a lot of people already knew about how good Carly is, so they focused on her," Sweat said. "That helped Sheyenne get open on the inside so she can score. I believe some of that has helped us win games because we can score from the inside and the outside."

Seabolt's scoring touch is most prominent on the inside, but if the Lady Tigers need her to, she has the versatility to score from the 3-point range as well.

"I've just been working at it my whole life," Seabolt said. "If I don't have a position inside, I can always step outside and shoot the jumper or the 3, but down low is my strong point."

Now, though just a sophomore, Seabolt is a clutch player for Dawson County in tough situations, and though many coaches have begun to notice how skilled she is, opponents haven't been able to stop her from being a threat on the floor.

"There's no doubt now, she's one of our go-to players," Sweat said. "With people knowing that and still being able to do what she does shows how good of a player she is."

Going into the quarterfinals matchup against Decatur at 6 p.m. Tuesday in Dawsonville, the Lady Tigers will once again depend on Seabolt to defend and score in their quest for a berth to the state semifinals.

Preparing for the game, Sweat and his team did their best to focus on Decatur's strengths and develop a strategy to work against a team that is slightly different from their previous state playoff opponents.

"(The other teams) had better outside players than inside players, so we would leave Sheyenne in the lane usually to defend," Sweat said. "We will do some of that tomorrow, but Sheyenne is going to be matched up with (Decatur's star player)."

The Lady Tigers are more than comfortable with Seabolt in this key position because of the range of talents and assets she brings when she steps out on the court.

"She's able to hold her own because she has good size," Sweat said. "She's able to play physical and battle with everyone we've played this year. She jumps well, and her rebounding has really improved."

Other than focusing on Decatur's biggest player, Sweat and Seabolt said Dawson County didn't make too many changes heading into Tuesday's game.

"We've checked up on the other team and looked at them and watched their clips," Seabolt said. "We're just going to keep doing what we've been doing and hopefully win."

"It's won us 20-something games this year," Sweat said. "It's too late to be changing stuff now."

The Lady Tigers have already achieved their objective of reaching the state tournament, and now they want to know what they can do next.

"None of these kids have ever played in the Georgia high school state tournament," Sweat said. "Now that they're in it, I really believe they want to win the whole thing. We know we've got a tough road but so does everyone else."

For the girls on the team who are graduating at the end of this year, Seabolt hopes she can help them finish the season the way they've all been dreaming about – with a championship. But for her, she has two more years to work towards her dreams.

"She's got two more years, and I know she doesn't want to stop here," Sweat said. "She wants to do it again."


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