One game at a time

Published 12:02 am Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Andalusia’s Alectricia Barnes (12) guards during her team’s sub regional win last Thursday. The Lady Bulldgos will have to have a good start tomorrow against Escambia County. | Andrew Garner/Star-News

Bennie Shellhouse knows how important it is for sixth-ranked Andalusia to take it one game at a time.

The Lady Bulldogs will play Escambia County in the semifinals of the Class 4A South Regional Tournament at the Mitchell Center on the campus of the University of South Alabama, and winning tonight’s game would add a huge boost to the program. The last time the Lady Bulldogs won at the regional tournament was in 2009.

“Considering we got put out in the last two years in the first game down there, I think it’s really important for us,” the Lady Bulldogs’ coach said.

Andalusia (27-2) beat St. James 58-31 in the sub regional last week, and is riding a 25-game win streak going into tomorrow’s 6 p.m. tip off against the Lady Blue Devils.

Escambia County is 21-5 overall, and finished runner up in the Class 4A, Area 1 tournament.

The Lady Blue Devils are coached by first-year coach Janice Kidd and are led on the court by Jasmine Ireland and Diamond Williams.

Some big wins for ECHS this season include victories over Robertsdale, UMS-Wright, T.R. Miller, Flomaton and Jackson.

Shellhouse said the Lady Blue Devils have good guard play.

“We’ll just try and match up with them,” he said. “The key to the ball game for us is rebound and not having too many turn overs.”

Additionally, Shellhouse said getting off to a good start in the game is crucial.

“The first quarter is going to be pivotal for us,” Shellhouse said.

Shellhouse said the girls are also aware of how important this first game of the regional tournament is.

“With them being seniors, you don’t have to do a whole lot to motivate them,” he said. “They want it. Whether or not we can string four quarters together, that’ll be a different story.

“I think we’ll see them fight together more than they have this year,” he said.