Lady Tigers look to take another step
LAGRANGE – They’ve already punched their ticket to the state tournament.
With that accomplished, the Troup Lady Tigers will now try to earn the right to host a state-tournament game next week.
Troup secured its state invitation with Tuesday’s come-from-behind 47-40 win over Fayette County in the first round of the Region 5-AAAA tournament.
Next up is a semifinal showdown against Woodward Academy, and that game will be played at Carrollton High School today at 6 p.m.
The winner of today’s game will not only advance to Friday’s region-championship game, but will be at home for a state-tournament game.
The loser of today’s game will play in the third-place game on Friday against either Carrollton or Whitewater and will be on the road for a state game.
Woodward Academy finished second in the region during the regular season, and it had a first-round bye in the region tournament.
Troup, which is seeded sixth, trailed third-seeded Fayette County by seven points after three periods.
Troup outscored Fayette County 17-3 in the fourth quarter, though, to earn a state bid for the first time since the 2011-2012 season.
Making the win even more impressive, it came on Fayette County’s home floor.
“They had a good fan presence there too,” Troup head coach Carla Thornton said. “My girls kept their composure.”
Woodward Academy won both regular-season meetings against Troup.
The first one was close, with Woodward Academy hanging on for a 55-52 road win.
“We were in it,” Thornton said. “We just couldn’t make our shots.”
The rematch was a bit more one-sided, with Woodward Academy winning 54-37 at home.
On Friday, both Callaway teams, along with the LaGrange Grangers, will play in the semifinals of their region tournaments.
The Grangers, the top seed in the Region 1-AAAAA tournament, will host the Northside Patriots on Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Northside, which is the tournament’s number four seed, beat fifth-seeded Harris County 74-68 on Wednesday to reach the semifinals.
Northside and LaGrange played in the final game of the regular season last week, and it was a thriller.
LaGrange’s Mike Hardy scored with a few seconds left in overtime to give his team a 71-68 victory that wrapped up the number one seed.
The Grangers will be back on the court on Saturday to play for a region title, or for third place.
Also on Friday, Callaway’s girls’ and boys’ teams will play in the semifinals of the Region 5-AAA tournament at Central-Carroll.
The Lady Cavaliers are seeded second, and they’ll play the third-seeded Pepperell Lady Dragons at 4 p.m.
Pepperell beat Central-Carroll 65-37 on Wednesday in a first-round tournament game.
The Cavaliers, the top seed in the tournament, will play the Central-Carroll Lions at 8:30 p.m. on Friday.
Central-Carroll kept its season alive by beating Cedartown 45-31 in a first-round game on Wednesday.
Callaway’s teams will play again on Saturday, either for the region championship, or for third place.
Reach Kevin Eckleberry at (706) 884-7311 or on Twitter @lagrangesports