Playoffs getting started

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 2, 2007

High school playoffs are now here. The real teams have emerged to the top to do battle with a worthy opponent. It&8217;s the time of the year that any one can be beaten on any given night. It&8217;s the time where we can throw out what is on paper in terms of how a team performed through out the season. It&8217;s a time where if you are a fan, be prepared to do some traveling. I&8217;m looking forward to the playoff run amongst the area teams.

Demopolis seems to have gone unnoticed by most fans of their opponents. One of reason is that the Tigers are not ranked in the Top 10. Rest assured, the coaches no very well of Demopolis&8217; potential. DHS will travel to Greenville for its first round game Friday.

Sweet Water is looking good and is primed for a championship. Thy are very powerful this year and will host Millry tomorrow.

Two other Marengo County teams that will do battle in Round 1 are A.L. Johnson and Marengo. ALJ gave MHS a thumping last week to give it some momentum going into their match up with J.U. Blacksher. They will play tomorrow instead of Friday. This will be speed versus strength. Should be a great game. The Panthers of Marengo will have their hands full at South Lamar. The Stallions will be prepared. If Marengo show any signs of the way the played against ALJ last week, South Lamar will run all over them.

The fourth–seeded Sunshine Tigers have a great opportunity to surprise the McIntosh Demons. McIntosh game plan is to stop the run because they think the Tigers can&8217;t throw. I hope that isn&8217;t their only focus. Neither team has posted winning season of late. They both lack playoff experience. Though the Demons are seeded number one, this is a toss up.

Sumter County has a playoff birth and will venture into Aliceville, who&8217;s ranked eighth and post a 9-1 record. Greene County gets into the playoff picture in spite of their 3-7 record. They are not a 3-7 team and look to give T.R. Miller a good game.

The Southern Academy Cougars will host Wilcox Academy on Friday. Their regular season contest almost resulted in a stand off in Camden. The Cougars pulled it out late in the fourth quarter with a 7-0 win. Wilcox will be looking to return the favor.

Demopolis&8217; Dusty Goodwin and Vincent Jackson of the No. 2 ranked University of North Alabama will visit the area Saturday when they clash against UWA in Livingston on Saturday.

Oh yes. What happen to Alabama Saturday? Makes you wanna go hmmm&8230;

BASKETBALL: This is also the time of year when basketball sneaks in. The season&8217;s first games will begin this month.

In the college ranks, R.C. Hatch graduate Vinecia Dudley made her college debut this past weekend in the Louisiana State University-Eunice Fall Classic, knocking down 52 points in two games. She led the Wallace Community College-Selma Lady Patriots to two wins in the tournament.

The Uniontown native dropped in 21 points in the opening game of the season, when WCCS beat the host LSU-Eunice 64-51. In the second contest, Dudley scored 31 points as the Lady Patriots whipped the Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College Lady Bulldogs, 85-70. In the later contest, Dudley shot a torrid 63 percent from the field. She hit 12 of 19 shots, including four out of eight three-pointers.

Dudley led the Hatch to the 2A state semi finals last season and the &8217;03-04 season; and to the regional semis in the &8217;04-&8217;05 season. She&8217;ll be a good one to watch this season as well others that I will make note of. Her team will be at Meridian Community College tonight for a game starting at 5:30 p.m.

See you on the gridiron.

James Gilmore is sports editor of The Times.