Lady Tigers know about Mobile

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 26, 2004

The alarm clocks are set for a 9 a.m. wake up call as the Demopolis High School Lady Tigers prepare for their 4A quarterfinal match-up against the Lady Tigers of Thomasville Friday in Mobile.

“I’m glad that we are playing first because to me it’s the waiting around all day to play that kills you mentally,” DHS head coach Tony Pittman said.

Preparing for a 9 a.m. basketball game at South Alabama’s Mitchell Center is a job within it’s self. Not only will time of play be a factor, but players must also quickly become adjusted to a different style of shooting and pace of game.

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“It’s hard to play at that time in the day,” Pittman said. “Your body is not use to that kind of activity at 9 o’clock in the morning.”

Though the Lady Tigers have previously beaten Thomasville twice this season, winning 45-41 on the road and 46-42 at home, this game will be entirely different due to it’s location and atmosphere.

The Lady Tigers like many other high school teams, regularly shoot at a basket that sits in front of a wall. But come Friday, there will be no wall.

“Without that wall there, players tend to want to change their shot,” Pittman said. “Players have a tendency to want to guide the ball rather than shoot it.”

Another factor to consider is the overall pace of the game. With games being played on a somewhat timely manner, one behind the other, the overall pace of such a game can easily have a tendency to get really fast.

“I would say that controlling the tempo of the game is a huge factor,” Pittman said. “We can’t make the game any faster than it already is. We have to make them play to our pace.”

But the Lady Tigers have no fear for they have seen it all before. Every DHS starter has at least two years of experience in games of this caliber, while Thomasville will be experiencing it all for the first time.

Starting guard Janet Woods leads the way for the Lady Tigers with four solid years of experience under her belt. Forward Gabrielle Essex has three years, while Forward Kateria Johnson, center Kelly Johnson and guard Shawneese Armstead all have two years experience.

“Our experience will play a major factor,” Pittman said. “We have gone through it before and we know what to expect.”

Info box

Mobile Bound

DHS has purchased over 200 royal blue and white shakers to be given out at the game.

Two buses have been fully booked with fans for the trip to Mobile.

The fan buses will leave Demopolis on Friday morning at 5:45 a.m.

DHS has purchased over 200 car flags for purchase at $10 a piece.

The Lady Tigers will travel to Mobile on Thursday afternoon

There will be a 10 p.m. curfview for all players.