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Lady Grangers get first win

By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY

Daily News

VILLA RICA – The LaGrange Lady Grangers dropped their first three games of the season, but head coach Stephen Tuck liked what he was seeing from the team.

He felt progress was being made in practice, and his hope was that the effort the players were putting in would result in a victory.

On Friday night in the opening game of the SMI Holiday Classic, that’s what happened.

Facing Central-Carroll, LaGrange surged to an 18-9 lead after the first quarter, and it secured a 44-37 victory at Temple

High School.

“It was one of those things where we wanted to see all the hard work that we had in practice pay off, and I think if finally did,” Tuck said. “Offensively, we were able to hit some shots, defensively we were able to lock down. You could kind of see the girls, the lightbulb start clicking in their head a little bit better.”

Unfortunately for LaGrange, the rest of the tournament didn’t go as well.

LaGrange lost to a strong Cass team 85-37 on Saturday, and it fell to Harris County 54-30 on Monday.

LaGrange (1-5) has faced a challenging early-season schedule that features three teams ranked in the top 10 in their respective classifications.

“Saturday, we played Cass, and that’s the number four team in (Class) AAAAA,” Tuck said. “We’ve played Troup, Cass, and Heard County, which is ranked in AA. So, so the competition we’re playing right now, it’s focusing on getting better. That’s the main focus, is get better, because you’re still 0-0 in the region.”

In the Central-Carroll game, LaGrange put together its best quarter of the season to take an 18-9 lead after the first eight minutes.

Nina Brooks, LaGrange’s representative on the all-tournament team, scored nine points in the first quarter, and she finished with 15 points.

After watching its lead shrink to five points, LaGrange outscored Central-Carroll 10-6 in the fourth quarter to secure the win.

Brandasia Cofield and Corriah Williams each scored eight points for LaGrange.

CASS 85

LAGRANGE 37

Cass scored 31 points in the opening quarter on the way to the win in the second round of the SMI Holiday Classic.

Jayla Lancaster and Carmen Lynch each scored 11 points for LaGrange, and Brandasia Cofield scored five points.

HARRIS COUNTY 54

LAGRANGE 30

Nina Brooks and Jayla Lancaster each scored eight points for LaGrange, while Corriah Williams added six points in the loss to Harris County in the final game of the SMI Holiday Classic.

Harris County led 16-5 after the first quarter, and it held a comfortable lead the rest of the way.

While it was a losing night, LaGrange head coach Stephen Tuck felt his players did a solid job offensively, even if it didn’t show up on the scoreboard.

“I told them today, you didn’t make shots,” Tuck said. “Offensively, I need you to focus on the fact that you took good shots. You didn’t make them, but continue to take good shots, and they’ll fall. That’s all you can do.”

Tuck also liked the way his players dealt with Harris County’s pressure defense.

“We handled the press,” Tuck said. “Now you can handle the press, you took a step forward. That’s what you want to focus on.”