While the LaGrange Grangers will be a busy team next week with three games in the LaGrange Toyota Basketball Classic, the rest of the county’s basketball teams will take next week off.
Most of the teams will return to the court on Jan. 4 when region play begins.
In past years, the boys’ teams from LaGrange, Callaway and Troup have played in the LaGrange Toyota tournament, but the Cavaliers and Tigers opted out this year.
Callaway was originally scheduled to host its own tournament next week, but that tournament has been canceled.
Troup has already played in two tournaments, both in Alabama.
There’ll be eight teams participating in next week’s tournament at LaGrange High.
The games get under way on Dec. 27 with four games, including a showdown between LaGrange and Valley (Ala.) at 7:30 p.m.
The tournament continues Friday and Saturday, with the championship game set for Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
The participating teams are LaGrange, Valley, Opelika (Ala.), Rockdale County, Northgate, Hillgrove, Russell County (Ala.) and W.D. Mohammed, and every team will play three games.
The Grangers will carry an 8-0 record into the tournament, with the most recent win coming Tuesday against Callaway.
The Grangers will work in some time off before the tournament.
“They’re going to get three days off, so we’ll practice at the college Saturday and Sunday, and then we’ll take a few days and we’ll practice Wednesday and then we’ll have our tournament,” Pauley said.
The 8-0 Grangers will be practicing at the college because there’s going to be work done on the court at LaGrange High.
Callaway decided to host its own tournament rather than participate in LaGrange’s this year, but the tournament has been called off.
“One team dropped out, so I’m not going to have it next week,” Callaway head coach Terry Hayes said.
Hayes said he didn’t try to find a tournament for his team to play in, choosing instead to practice and give his players some time off.
Callaway will host Troup on Friday and Lanett on Saturday before taking a break before the start of Region 4-AAA play on Jan. 4 against Rockmart.
Troup has already played five tournament games, two in Lafayette (Ala.) and three in Auburn (Ala.).
Troup won the tournament in Lafayette with a 2-0 record, and it went 1-2 in the Auburn tournament.
Troup head coach Thermond Billingslea liked the idea of having a bunch of games early, and then having some time to practice before region play begins on Jan. 4.
The Tigers played five consecutive close tournament games, and they won three of them.
“We’re pleased to win as we’re trying to learn,” Billingslea said.
The Tigers will visit Callaway on Friday and then host Northside on Saturday, with the Region 5-AAAA opener set for Jan. 4 against Alexander.
On the girls’ side, the Callaway, LaGrange and Troup coaches all opted not to play in holiday tournaments this season.
LaGrange played its final game of the year on Tuesday against Callaway, and the Lady Grangers won’t play again until Jan. 4 when they host Shaw in their Region 5-AAAA opener.
Callaway and Troup will play one another on Friday.
On Saturday, Callaway hosts Lanett, and Troup welcomes Northside.
In GISA basketball, Lafayette Christian School’s teams have been off since Dec. 10, and they won’t play again until Jan. 4 when they face Solid Rock Academy.
LaGrange Academy’s teams have also played their final games of the year, and they’ll get back at it on Jan. 4 when GISA Region 4-AA play opens against Griffin Christian.
The LaGrange Academy boys’ team headed into the break with a one-point loss to Lifeway Christian.
The Warriors rallied from a double-digit deficit late to nearly pull off the win, but they fell short.
“We start (region play) Jan. 4 in Griffin, and hopefully they’ll look back and they’ll take the hurt from this loss to propel them forward,” LaGrange Academy coach Britt Gaylor said after the Lifeway game.
Dawson Street Christian School’s teams will participate in a tournament at Furtah Prep this weekend.