Tigers open season with 3A runner-up

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 9, 2005

The Victor Smith era will kick off this Friday when the Greenville Tigers take to the hardwood for the first time this season against Class 3A state finalist Central-Hayneville.

Smith takes over for Randy Fullington, who announced in late May that he would be stepping down as boys basketball coach. So who a better fit to take over a young Tiger team that won its area title than Fullington's top assistant.

&#8220I hope we can build on what we did last season,” Smith said. &#8220And I'm confident we can.”

There won't be many noticeable changes in the Tigers except that Smith wants to push the ball up and down the floor as much as possible.

&#8220We want run the floor as much as we can with the athletes we have,” he said. &#8220We want to set the tempo and force our opponents to try to catch up with us.”

After finishing 16-15 and advancing to the sub-state playoffs, Greenville will play one of the more competitive schedules in the area. The Tigers face Class 3A finalist Central-Hayneville, Class 3A power Calhoun, Class 1A power Brantley, Class 4A power Hillcrest-Evergreen and traditional Class 6A power Jeff Davis outside of area play.

Greenville also will participate in two 16-team tournaments in Brewton and Valdosta, Ga.

&#8220I feel like you play the best competition you get the best out of yourself, and we'll be tested when it comes tournament time,” Smith said. &#8220You have to play them and beat them. It won't be easy though.”

Smith has a solid nucleus returning from the defending area championship team with Isiah Mack leading the charge. Mack, who will play at the small forward position, averaged 13 points and eight rebounds a game.

Demetrius Posey (6-foot-5 junior) will start at the power forward spot, while the duo of Ricky McCall, James Daniels are still battling for the starting center position.

A week into the season, Smith thought that the point guard position was all but sewn up. It doesn't seem to be the case now with Lynn Lewis, Demarcus Griffin and Edward Seawright in a dead heat.

Rashad Knight has &#8220put a strangle-hold” on the shooting guard spot, according to Smith.