Mobile Bound: Lady Tigers whip visiting Montevallo

Published 12:00 am Friday, February 20, 2004

The Lady Tigers of Demopolis High could have walked off the court at the half Thursday night in their Class 4A Southwest Sub-Regional with a 37-7 lead and still managed to get the win as they dominated the Lady Bulldogs of Montevallo throughout the first half of play to take an easy 50-33 win.

The Lady Tigers collected seven steals in the first period before the Lady Bulldogs got their first shot off. And by games end the Lady Tigers had finished with a season high 26 steals on the night.

“We set the tone in the first five possessions,” DHS head coach Tony Pittman said. “Everything starts with defense and tonight our defense got the job done.”

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The Lady Bulldogs were powerless against the Lady Tigers as they were only able to get off seven shots in the first period hitting 3-of-7 from the field and 0-of-4 from the line in the first half as they trailed the Lady Tigers 37-7.

Leading the charge for the Lady Tigers was none other than junior Gabrielle Essex who collected 13 points, 8 steals, 6 assist and 2 blocks. Sophomore Katerria Johnson saw double digits as well Thursday night as she collected 11 points, 5 rebounds and 4 steals, while senior Janet Woods followed with 10 points, 4 steals and 3 assist.

“This was just a great all-around defensive effort on our part tonight,” Pittman said. “It was a big step for us to be able to get back to Mobile this year. We have thought about nothing else all year. And now we are looking forward to going further than ever before.”

Defensively the Lady Tigers dominated throughout the game in every aspect, collecting 26-team steals and 5-team blocks. Sophomore Kelly Johnson was the backbone of the Lady Tigers defensive efforts Thursday night as she collected 3 blocks, 8 points and 4 rebounds. Offensively the Lady Tigers were 7-of-10 from the line while hitting 17-of-38 from the floor and 3-of-6 from 3-point land.

With the win the Lady Tigers will make the long awaited trip to Mobile next Friday for their regional playoff. As off now that opponent has yet to be determined, but if the Lady Tigers can continue to play like they did Thursday night the next stop for them cold easily be Birmingham.