Tifton Gazette

Local Sports

January 16, 2013

Blue Devils stay red hot, dump Westover

TIFTON — It was a sweep for the Tift County Blue Devils against the Westover Patriots Tuesday night in Albany, one that left both coaches feeling pretty pleased.

“It was a great win for us,” said girls coach Julie Conner.

“Westover played real good basketball,” said boys coach Eric Holland. “They just hung around.”

The Westover gym is one that both Holland and Conner said is a tough place to play. Dubbed the Boston Garden in honor of legendary Patriots coach Willie Boston, games are played before big crowds before two teams always up for the challenge. “It’s difficult to win in the Boston Garden,” Holland said.

But win the Blue Devils did.

Despite Holland being called for a technical foul that the coach said stirred the crowd into a frenzy, they held on 87-77. Brannen Greene, who will be a Kansas Jayhawk next year, supplied 37 of the points. They are now 13-2, ranked the No. 1 team in Class AAAAAA by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and are unbeaten in the state of Georgia.

The night had gotten off to a good start for the visiting Devils, as the girls won 67-62. It was a complete turnaround from earlier this season, when they played Westover as their regular season opener. That evening, the Lady Patriots dominated defensively and went home to Albany with a 44-26 victory. Things have changed since then. Coming into Tuesday’s game, Tift possessed a nine game winning streak, having last been beaten on Dec. 19.

For the head coach, the win not just doubled as revenge for the opening game loss against Westover, it was revenge for several years.

“I have never won over there, so  it was really, really sweet,” she said.

In fact, the Lady Devils were zero for the last three seasons. In 2010-11, the Lady Pats won 58-44 and 39-29. Last year, the results were the same. Two Westover wins, 54-51 and 65-55.

Tuesday, Tift had big nights scoring-wise from the usual suspects, Dee Dee DeShazer and Alexis Johnson, who finished with 24 and 18, respectively. Conner said that they were far from the only big contributors. “I also had a big game out of Staceyanna (Murrell) and Brakia (Bateman). It took everybody. It was a total team win.”

While Conner said that Westover was good for Tift’s psyche, the big games are coming this weekend. They play the Colquitt County Packers in Moultrie Friday and then head in the opposite direction Saturday when they tackle the Coffee Trojans in Douglas.

Holland knows that the Devils will be the big draw in both places. “It’s going to be a packed house in Moultrie,” he said.

“It’s going to be some tough games,” Conner said, but admitted that she was feeling pretty good about her squad. “We’re doing the right things.”

Text Only
Local Sports
  • Panthers will play six on the road in 2014

    For Ryan Branch and the Tiftarea Academy Panthers football team, it is one step closer to a regular football schedule. They have 10 games this year, down from the 11 of the past two.

    April 22, 2014

  • Bulloch Academy upsets Lady Panthers, 2-1

    The 2014 soccer season ended Wednesday afternoon for the Lady Panthers of Tiftarea Academy at the Panther Pit. A No. 2 seed going into the state playoffs, they were defeated 2-1 by the Bulloch Academy Lady Gators in the first round.

    April 23, 2014

  • Fillies ready for GCAA softball tourney

    "I'd rather be us than anyone else right now."
    That is the boast of Donna Campbell, head coach of the ABAC Fillies softball team. Looking at how the team has been doing going into the GCAA state playoffs, it is hard to disagree with her.

    April 23, 2014

  • Horne named to MaxPreps freshman squad

    Chalk up one more for the Tift County boys basketball team. Another list of honors was released this week and not surprisingly, a local player was honored.

    April 22, 2014

  • ABAC golf team finishes eighth in district championship

    The golf team at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College wound up the year with an 8th place finish in the National Junior College Athletic Association District 4 Championship in Albany at Stonebridge Country Club.

    April 22, 2014

  • Tiftarea headed for state track meet

    There will be lots at stake and lots at state for Tiftarea Academy Thursday. The state track meet is set to begin at Albany's Hugh Mills Stadium and the Panthers have qualified in 21 different events. Long distance, short distance, relays, jumping, there will be at least one individual in all of those and in a handful of events, there will be two Panthers.

    April 22, 2014

  • 20140421 Alex Abbott slides in.tif Blue Devils slide past ‘Cats on Senior Day

    Nine seniors started the day Monday for the Tift County Blue Devils against the Bainbridge Bearcats. Throughout the game, several different combinations were used. By the end of it, the combination of Alex Abbott and Will Reinhardt was the one that mattered most.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tift sinks region golf title

     The Tift County Lady Devils golf team took the Region 1-AAAAAA championship Monday at Spring Hill Country Club while the Blue Devils fell just short for second place.

    April 21, 2014

  • Tiftarea girls finish 2nd, host Bulloch Wednesday

    When the Lady Panther soccer team loaded their bus at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning, they were hoping to finally get to play their last region game, along with making another note in soccer history for the Tiftarea Academy program.
    By the time they were on the bus again, headed back to Chula, they checked both off their list.

    April 21, 2014

  • Blue Devils soccer team awaits their fate

    Though the region schedule is done for the boys Tift County Blue Devil soccer squad, they still have their fate hanging in the balance.

    April 21, 2014

Business Marquee
House Ads
Weather Radar

Do you plan to watch any of the Republican National Convention?

     View Results