Tifton Gazette

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December 12, 2013

Devils host “white-out” against Wayne

TIFTON — The Tift County Blue Devils have added an extra attraction for their Saturday basketball game against the Wayne County Yellow Jackets. The school has asked fans to wear white to the game to show their support for the teams.

Fans are also requested to bring canned or non-perishable food item to the game to support families in need.

It has been a hot start for the Devils, who are 5-1 headed into tonight's game at Thomasville. Against a tough slate of opponents, the only loss has been to one of the nation's top teams, Montverde Academy (Fla.). Last week, they defeated Westover by four at home and a day later, took care of Buford in overtime on the road.

Georgia Tech signee Tadric Jackson has been the squad's leading scorer, averaging 21.5 points per game. Second and third highest scorers for the young season have been Preston Horne and D.J. Bryant, respectively.

The Lady Devils are currently 2-3, having dropped their last two. They have also played a rigorous schedule. Four of their five opponents made state tournaments last year, including one semifinalist. Alexis Johnson leads the squad in scoring.

Despite being a south Georgia school, Wayne County is an unfamiliar opponent for Tift. Their girls went to state last year, but were defeated in the first round. The last state appearance for their boys was in 2010.

Wayne will play Brunswick tonight. The Lady Jackets are 3-2 going into that contest, having won those 3 in a row, including a 96-point performance against Bacon County. The boys are 1-4, the win coming against Toombs County. They were scheduled to play Charlton Tuesday, but that game was postponed because of football.

Following Saturday's game, the teams will be going their separate ways for some time. The Lady Devils head south, with a Dec. 20 game at Bartram Trail and a Dec. 21 game against Ribault, both Florida schools. On the latter day, the boys host defending two-time state runners-up, Savannah. They will then play in the City of Palms tournament at Fort Myers, Fla.

Opponents have been released for the Lady Devils' trip to the Colquitt Christmas Classic later this month. The first two days call for them to play more teams from the Sunshine State. On Dec. 26, they go against Norland of Miami at 5:30 p.m. and a day later it's Rickards of Tallahassee at 7 p.m. Their final day, Dec. 28, has them in a 4 p.m. game against the Newton Lady Rams from Covington.

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