Tigers use Christmas tourneys to grow as a team

Published 12:05 am Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Class 3A Straughn Tigers varsity boys’ basketball team faced several tough challenges leading up to the new year and it has them geared up for area competition.

“These are tune up games for sure,” Straughn head coach Bradley Stephens said of playing in tournaments during the holidays. “It gives up a few games under our belt against some really quality teams.”

Over the past week, the Tigers faced top teams in different classifications in local tournaments.

“We went up against some teams that were loaded,” Stephens said. “That’s something we are going to see when we get into area play this week. In the Red Level tournament, we were able to push through two games against great teams like Georgiana and T.R. Miller. Red Level was another great test for us during the tournament.”

Stephens said that the tournaments have really helped them team see what they need to improve.

“Limiting turnovers is one of the biggest things we have to focus on,” Stephens said. “We are still turning the ball over and giving up easy points that way. The offense has to start executing better. Our defense has really come along nicely, but turnovers have really been killing us lately.”

The Tigers will open up area play on Friday when they travel take on Geneva.

“As a team, we are starting to come together,” Stephens said. “We haven’t quite gelled yet, but we are getting there. The game against Georgiana really showed that we have the ability to play with a team with that type of athlete. That’s going to be important because there will be teams in our area that have similar players.”

Straughn’s Class 3A Area 3 opponents are Geneva, Opp and Slocomb.