LaGrange drops region road game to Harris County

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 3, 2016

By Kevin Eckleberry

HAMILTON – The LaGrange Grangers are still in first place in Region 1-AAAAA, but they’re now sharing that position after a road loss to Harris County on Tuesday.

With the 63-62 loss, the Grangers (19-6 overall) fell to 8-3 in the region, and they’re in a first-place tie with Carver, and Northside is one game back.

LaGrange closes the regular season with a home game against Northside on Friday, and it would finish no lower than tied for first place in the region with a win.

A loss, and the Grangers could drop to third place, meaning they’d have to win a game in the region tournament to reach the semifinals and secure a spot in the state tournament.

Fortunately for the Grangers, they’ve been an outstanding team at home this season.

They’ve only lost one home game, and they’ve won all five of their region games on their home floor.

The Grangers had their chances in Tuesday’s game.

LaGrange was down by four when Gabe Duckett made a 3-pointer with 30 seconds left to make it a one-point game.

The Grangers had the ball late with a chance to win it, but a potential game-winning shot went awry, and the Tigers held on for the narrow win.

LaGrange head coach Mark Veal said turnovers hurt the team late.

“We turned the ball over a couple of times when we had the chance to take the lead,” Veal said.

Derieko Smith led LaGrange with 17 points, LaPerion Perry added 13 points, and Alex Dantzler and Mike Hardy scored nine and eight points, respectively.

Jaylyn Richardson led Harris County with 19 points.

In the girls’ game, LaGrange got hot late and scored 19 points in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough as Harris County held on for a 53-41 win.

LaGrange (9-12 overall) fell to 3-8 in the region heading into Friday’s regular-season finale against Northside.

Aryan Dozier paced LaGrange with 21 points, and Chnairiea Strozier added 10 points.

TROUP: The Tigers lost to Fayette County for the second time this season, but it was a much more competitive game the second time around.

On Jan. 15, Troup was overwhelmed by Fayette County on the way to a 53-27 home loss.

Those same two teams got together on Tuesday in Fayetteville, and as Fayette County found out, Troup is a much-improved team.

It was close the whole way, and Fayette County held on for a 48-40 win in the Region 5-AAAA game.

The game was tied 10-10 after the first quarter, and Fayette County led 28-22 at the half and 37-30 after three quarters.

The Tigers (7-13 overall) will carry a 2-7 region record into Friday’s regular-season finale at Carrollton.

In Tuesday’s girls’ game, Troup lost to Fayette County 50-40 to fall to 1-8 in the region.

Friday’s task will be a tough one for the Lady Tigers against Carrollton, which leads the region with a 9-0 record.

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