DHS Girls Win Area

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 12, 2004

With their 54-52 overtime victory over the Livingston High School Lady Cougars Friday nigh, the 13-4 Demopolis High School Lady Tigers clinched another Class 4A Area 8 Championship.

The Lady Tigers led throughout the first half of play, but allowed the Lady Cougars to come from behind in the second half due to missed opportunities and excessive turnovers.

“We missed too many easy lay-ups under the basket and had too many turnovers in the third quarter,” DHS head coach Tony Pittman said.

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The Lady Tigers were 17-of-49 (35percent) from the floor Friday night and 14-of-27 (52 percent) from the line, but had 17 turnovers, most of which came in the third period.

“We were outscored 13-5 in the third quarter and had six turnovers. And I know we missed at least 14 lay-ups. But the one thing I am most pleased with is that we didn’t quite,” Pittman said.

Leading the way for the Lady Tigers was junior Gabrielle Essex with 21 points and 13 rebounds with Kelly Johnson and Katira Johnson both collecting 10 points as well.

“I can’t say enough about Gabrielle Essex, but she can’t carry the team alone. Friday night we needed other players like Kelly and Katira to step up and that’s what they did,” Pittman said.

The Lady Tigers came into Friday night’s area match-up with an (3-2) area record, sitting in second place behind the (4-1) Lady Cougars. But with their win the two teams finished the season dead even at (4-2).

Monday, representatives from all four Area 8 schools met to decipher the tiebreaker. According to coach Pittman in the case of an area tie, the tie must be determined by looking at how each team performed against the third place team, which in this case was Greensboro High.

“LHS finished at (4-2), DHS finished at (4-2), Greensboro finished at (3-3) and Greene County finished at (1-5). Since Greensboro was the third place team, we had to look at how both LHS and DHS did against them,” Pittman said. “DHS won both games played against Greensboro, while LHS split with Greensboro 1 and 1, so DHS wins the area.”

With their area championship, the Lady Tigers will have the honor of hosting the Class 4A Area 8 Tournament February 12th and 14th, with a No. 1 seeding.

But there is still plenty of work to be done on the court before then.

The Lady Tigers must now prepare for their last week of regular season play with three non-area games. The Lady Tigers will travel to Marion tonight to face the Francis Marion Lady Rams. Then return home on Thursday night for their last home game of the regular season against the Dallas County Lady Hornets. And will wrap it all up with a trip to York on Friday night to play the Sumter County Lady Wildcats.