“We knew that we were going to be in a good fight,” Anniston head coach Eddie Bullock said. “Childersburg has a good young team and we knew that coming in. I already prepared the girls. I knew what they were capable of and everybody gets up to play Anniston. When we get ready to play we know that we are in a dogfight. I try to teach my girls that can be lax and Childersburg showed that tonight.”
Tiakeefah Huguley got things started for the Lady Bulldogs in the first quarter. Hugely scored six points in the quarter to help Anniston take an 11-8 lead.
The Lady Tigers had plenty of good shots in the first quarter, but their shots wouldn’t stay down.
“I thought we played hard,” Childersburg head coach Lin Slater said. “ We came out with great intensity, of course, you have to match their intensity if you want to play with them. They are a good team, they moved up and down the floor quick. They kept us on our toes. They never seemed to get fatigued from what I can see. We got tired a few times, threw up some bad shots and turned the ball over. Other than that, I think we played hard and I think that we had a good ball game.”
The Lady Tigers fought their way into the game in second quarter. Mac Kelly split a pair of free throws to cut the Anniston lead down to one point at 14-13 with 4:32 remaining before halftime. The Lady Bulldogs responded with a 7-2 run to take a 21-15 lead into halftime.
Childersburg opened the third quarter on a 13-6 run. Kelly scored with 2:34 left in the quarter to put the Lady Tigers ahead 28-27. Anniston’s Patricia Pickens scored four points to fuel a 6-1 run to give the Lady Bulldogs a 33-28 lead going into the fourth quarter.
“She is normally the go to person,” Bullock said. “Pat had duel duty, because she has to guard the toughest person on the other team and she has to score 20 points for us. All good teams get down, its not so much you getting down, its what you do after you get down. The heart of a champion is shown when you get down. We got down by one point and came right back with five points in a row.”
Roderick Barclay scored nine points in the fourth quarter to keep Childersburg close. Anniston’s Daica Wilson scored six of her 10 points in the fourth quarter.
The Lady Bulldogs went 11-14 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter to seal the victory.
The Lady Tigers are losing one senior from this seasons team.
“Adrienne Hardie was the only senior we had,” Slater said. “She is dedicated and a hard worker. I am going to miss her. She is definitely the definition of a leader in every aspect, in the classroom and on the court. We are going to miss her presence on the team.”
With having a team full with freshmen and sophomores Slater believes that the sky is the limit for this team.
“It happens like that some times,” Slater said. Sometimes the ball goes in and some times it goes out. I still thank God, because we didn’t even have to be in this game. We could have lost last week and it could have been over. For these kids to be as young as they are, to make it this far, is a huge statement for this program. They set an incredible foundation to build off of for next season and the next season after that. I am proud of them. I think they played hard and we were just a few mistakes away from getting to Jacksonville State.”
Conatct LaVonte Young@firstname.lastname@example.org.