LaGrange hosting tournament

Published 4:44 pm Wednesday, December 26, 2018


Daily News

It’s tournament time.

Eight teams, including the host LaGrange Grangers, will participate in the LaGrange Toyota Invitational that begins today and goes through Saturday.

Joining LaGrange in the tournament are Spalding County, Arabia Mountain, Harris County, Grady, Heard County, Douglass and WD Mohammed.

Each team will play three games, and the championship game will be on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

LaGrange (5-5) heads into the tournament riding high after winning back-to-back games in the War Eagle Classic last week at Woodward Academy.

LaGrange’s first opponent will be WD Mohammed, and those teams will play today at 7:30 p.m.

If LaGrange wins, it will play again at 7:30 p.m. on Friday against the winner of today’s game between Heard County and Douglass.

If LaGrange wins its first two games, it would play for the tournament title on Saturday.

The Grangers headed into the War Eagle Classic having dropped back-to-back games by a total of six points.

LaGrange turned the tables at Woodward Academy, getting blowout wins over Elite Scholars Academy and Lovett to even its record at 5-5.

“We feel our team really got a lot better (at Woodward),” LaGrange head coach Mark Veal said. “We’re pleased with the direction we’re going. We’re starting to flow better. We still have some kinks we’ve got to iron out and get better with, but it’s nice to go into Christmas break with two wins, on a little bit of a streak. Hopefully when we start the Classic, we’ll continue the momentum.”

It’s a new-look LaGrange team this season.

Even the players who spent a lot of time on the court last season have been asked to take on new roles.

“In years past, we’ve had returnees in the same role,” Veal said. “The returnees we have this year, they’re in a different role. They’re being asked to score more, or play a different position. And you add some other new pieces to the mix, it’s always a change of chemistry.”

Veal added that “we’re starting to get better. We started out struggling, and hopefully we’re starting to hit our stride now.”

One of the players who has grown into his role is freshman Jakobe Jones, who is LaGrange’s starting point guard.

“He’s doing well,” Veal said. “He’s handling the ball for us, and he’s been able to hit some shots. There’s still some things he’s got to do better, but he’s got a killer instinct. That’s one thing you can’t really coach. He’s naturally got that.”

LaGrange’s first-round opponent is a WD Mohammed team that has been a regular participant in the tournament in recent years.

The Caliphs bring a 3-5 record into today’s game.

If LaGrange gets past WD Mohammed, it could face a Douglass team that is 7-4 and has the best record of any team in the tournament.



3 p.m. – Spalding County vs. Arabia Mountain

4:30 p.m. – Harris County vs. Grady

6 p.m. – Heard County vs. Douglass

7:30 p.m. – WD Mohammed vs. LaGrange


3 p.m. – Spalding County/Arabia Mountain loser vs. Harris County/Grady loser

4:30 p.m. – Heard County/Douglass loser vs. WD Mohammed/LaGrange loser

6 p.m. – Spalding County/Arabia Mountain winner vs. Harris County/Grady winner

7:30 p.m. – Heard County/Douglass winner vs. WD Mohammed/LaGrange winner


3 p.m. – Seventh-place game

4:30 p.m. – Fifth-place game

6 p.m. – Third-place game

7:30 p.m. – Championship game