BAILEYTON, Tenn. (WJHL) – North Greene senior Grace Buchanan has been around the game of basketball longer than most young ladies her age.

“Probably the day I was born,” she laughed. “The summer I was born, [my dad] took the girls to a basketball camp … and that was my very first basketball camp.”

That’s what happens when your dad is head coach of the Lady Huskies.

“I’ve grown up running up and down this court after games and after practices,” she said.

It’s a situation she considers herself lucky to be in – for the most part.

“I’ve always made the joke – I get it here and I get it at home,” she smiled. “But, I’m fortunate enough to get that because he teaches me not only about basketball, but about life, too.”

In fact, it’s a full family affair for the Buchanan’s at NGHS in 2023.

“My dad is my coach – he works here,” she said. “My mom works here, my sister goes to school here. So, we’re all here together.”

For the last three years, they’ve all known nothing but success on the court. The Lady Huskies have won three-straight regional championships, earning a state tournament berth each season.

Those teams shared a special bond on and off the hardwood, just like this year’s group.

“Growing up I’ve always watched dad’s teams and I’ve always known that I wanted my senior year, but all the teams I’ve been on, to have a really close bond,” she said. “We’ve grown up playing together since the third grade on travel teams. I’ve known all of them my whole life.”

This year, North Greene suited up just nine players and had been counted out as a serious contender in Region 1-A before the season began.

“There were a lot of doubts over the summer,” Buchanan said. “People would just talk and say you’ll never make it that far, you’ll never do those things.”

But, after Monday’s victory over Unaka, the Lady Huskies will, once again, play for a shot at a regional title.

“It’s pretty exciting – a lot of people said we wouldn’t make it this far, because last year we lost quite a few players and some big parts of our team,” she said. “I’m just proud of what we’ve done.”

Buchanan has also excelled as a member of the Huskies volleyball team, a slight change of pace from the basketball court.

“I like that we’re all – every possession, everybody is involved,” she said. “It’s not just one person that gets all the glory, everybody has to be involved for the play to work.”

She also finds time to participate in Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) and Beta Club, while also volunteering with her church’s youth group at a local homeless shelter. For Buchanan, it’s all about supporting the community that show her and her teammates the same throughout the season.

“Jesus helped others and he told us to treat others as we would want to be treated,” she said. “So, if I was ever in that situation, I know I would want the help.”

Buchanan and the Lady Huskies will face Hampton for the Class 1A East Region 1 championship at 7 p.m. on Wednesday night in Blountville.