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Troup hopes to knock off rival LaGrange in rematch

By Kevin Eckleberry

keckleberry@civitasmedia.com

Troup’s Jarrious Jefferson gets a shot awayduring last week’s game against Heard County. Troup will host LaGrange on Friday. Kevin Eckleberry | Daily News
http://lagrangenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/web1_troup3.jpgTroup’s Jarrious Jefferson gets a shot awayduring last week’s game against Heard County. Troup will host LaGrange on Friday. Kevin Eckleberry | Daily News

LAGRANGE – They were so close.

When the Troup Tigers paid a visit to the LaGrange Grangers on Dec. 4, they came within a whisker of pulling off a huge road win.

Jarrious Jefferson hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer for the Tigers, but they came up one point short, with the Grangers escaping with a 53-52 win.

On Friday, Troup will get another chance to hand LaGrange its first loss of the season.

Troup will host LaGrange, with the girls’ game set to tip off at 6 p.m., and the boys’ game to follow at 7:30 p.m.

The Tigers (4-2) have only played two games since the loss to the Grangers, and they’ve won them both.

Troup rallied from 15 points down in the fourth quarter to beat Manchester 67-65, and it pulled away in the fourth quarter to beat Heard County 40-28.

Since a season-opening loss to Newnan, the Tigers have won four of five games, and they’re just two points away from a five-game winning streak.

Troup hung tough with LaGrange the whole way, only to come up one point short.

Still, it was an impressive performance, especially in light of LaGrange’s 7-0 start.

“We went toe-to-toe against a very well-coached team, against a very explosive team,” Troup head coach Paul Brewer said after the LaGrange game. “I felt like we controlled the tempo, and that’s what we had to do to stay in the game. We’re going to build off that.”

Jefferson, a sophomore, led Troup with 17 points in the first meeting, while senior guard Derieko Smith paced LaGrange with 20 points, including 10 points in the fourth quarter.

In the next game, the Tigers found themselves down by 15 points on the road against Manchester, but they staged a furious comeback to get the win.

Then against Heard County, Troup went on a 10-0 run in the fourth quarter to break things open.

Now, Troup will try to get its first win over LaGrange since the 2011-2012 season.

Also on Friday, the Troup Lady Tigers will attempt to knock off the rival Lady Grangers.

In the first meeting, Troup went on a 6-0 run in the fourth quarter to get within six with more than two minutes to play, but the comeback stalled, and LaGrange won 58-49.

Shaqoya Gilbert led Troup with 22 points in the game, while Shania Woodard (18 points) and Chnairiea Strozier (16 points) were in double figures for LaGrange.

Troup brings a 3-3 record into Friday’s game, while LaGrange is 5-2 after falling to Callaway on Tuesday.

Reach Kevin Eckleberry at (706) 884-7311 or on Twitter @lagrangesports