In the 2009-2010 season, with eight seniors leading the way, the Grangers lost just one game, and that came in the Class AAA championship game against Columbia.
As the Grangers get the 2012-2013 season under way, they are led by a massive senior class.
Of the 13 players on the varsity roster, three are juniors, and the remaining 10 players are seniors, many of whom were freshmen on the team that came within a whisper of winning a state title.
Last season, the Grangers went 18-11 and made it to the state tournament, and the expectations are much higher this season.
“We had some guys last year that could put some points in for us, but the reality of it was, we knew we were building for this season,” LaGrange head coach Mike Pauley said.
So far, things are looking promising for the senior-laden Grangers.
With Tuesday’s 76-52 victory over East Coweta, the Grangers are 2-0, and both wins have been by blowout.
In Tuesday’s game, one of the seniors, Justyn Olson, led the way with 22 points, including back-to-back 3-pointers at the close of the third quarter that helped LaGrange build a 17-point lead.
Another senior, Kwame Brown, added 15 points, and senior Demarcus Turnbough scored eight points.
Two other seniors, Anthony Alexander and Drew Moody, added seven points apiece.
The other seniors on the team are Baron Smith, Joe Sanders, Anthony Alexander, Dee Gates and Don Leak.
Two of those players, Gates and Sanders, didn’t play Tuesday since they just finished their football season.
Pauley said all of the seniors have made big strides between seasons.
“They’re more mature,” Pauley said. “There’s no question that we are looking for each other better. That’s a real bonus.”
The Grangers were clinging to a 13-8 after the first quarter Tuesday night, and they dominated the action in the second quarter to take a 35-19 at the half.
In the third period, with Olson getting hot with 11 points, the Grangers extended their lead to 58-41 despite a 16-point effort by East Coweta’s Jeremy Farmer in the quarter.
Olson capped the quarter with a 3-pointer at the buzzer, his second straight shot from long-distance.
“He hit the one, and then they found him the next time down,” Pauley said.
In the fourth period, the Grangers didn’t allow a point until the 3:50 mark as they put the game away.
Pauley felt the offensive execution was better Tuesday night than it was in the season opener against Lithia Springs.
“I thought we moved the ball to the open player a lot better tonight,” Pauley said. “We definitely pushed the ball up the floor faster. We didn’t finish real well at times, but we were very aggressive. We really liked those things.”
“Some of the mistakes we were making were because we were real aggressive. We can live with that.”