Lady Grangers lose a close one

Published 10:49 pm Thursday, December 28, 2017

By Kevin Eckleberry

NEWNAN – For the second straight day, the LaGrange Lady Grangers found themselves with an opportunity to grab a win in the Total Wireless Holiday Classic at Newnan High.

On Wednesday, LaGrange hung tough most of the way before losing to North Clayton 47-43.

A day later, LaGrange was involved in another close game, and it fell to Hiram 38-34.

LaGrange’s chances took a hit when seniors Chnaireia Strozier and Shaq Sutton fouled out late in the fourth quarter.

Hiram outscored LaGrange 11-4 in the fourth quarter to rally for the win.

LaGrange was once again playing without senior guard Aryan Dozier, who has been out the past few weeks with an illness.

Without Dozier, head coach Stephen Tuck has had to adjust the lineup, and some inexperienced players have gotten some valuable playing time.

“I know some people are being put in uncomfortable positions with Fruit (Dozier) being out,” Tuck said. “But as you think in terms of program-wise, it’ll prepare them for the rest of this year, and even next year when the two seniors (Dozier and Strozier) graduate. They’ve seen this moment. I think it’s a good opportunity for them to get out and learn. You hate to lose, but you’re always looking forward to an opportunity to learn.”

Strozier, who has thrived in Dozier’s absence, led LaGrange with 12 points on Thursday.

LaGrange will complete its stay in the tournament with a game against Grayson today at 9 a.m.