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Lady Panthers and Tigers continue road trips toward title
Lady Tiger coach Faye Baker talked defense during their playoff game against Beach Feb. 15. The Lady Tigers and Panthers are still hitting the road as they both advanced the first round of state playoffs. - photo by By Patty Leon / Coastal Courier
Women’s basketball is alive and well in Liberty County as the Bradwell Lady Tigers and the Liberty Lady Panthers continue their quest for a state title. Both Lady squads will have to do it on the road, however, as the competitions gets harder and the road trips get longer.  

Lady Panthers 55, Westover 40
The Panthers traveled to Albany last Saturday and defeated the Westover Lady Patriots by 15 and advance to the next round. Lady Panther Coach Carolyn Kelly said the teams get harder as the team progresses.
“Westover was very aggressive,” she said. “They were quick and more like a run and gun team.”
Kelly said she knew there were two girls on the Lady Patriots squad they had to maintain. Knowing that she had several defenses ready to combat the Lady Patriots’ offense.
“Our intention was to take these two out of their game and that seemed to frustrate the whole team because they felt the could not get them the ball,” she said.
Kelly said that although they were still able to score it took them out of their tempo and as usual Nisha Adams and Metra Walthour each played a good game.
“I think this was the best game of they both played to date,” Kelly said.
“Metra was able to hit Nisha with some key passes. Nisha in turn was able to put it up.”
Walthour ended the game with 18 points and Adams with 20.
But the battle is about to get harder as the Lady Panthers travel to Columbus today to face region 2-AAA powerhouse Kendrick. The Kendrick Lady Cherokees have an impressive 28-0 overall record and 20-0 in the 2-AAA region.
“This team is probably one of the best in the state,” Kelly said. “This team can do it all. They can shoot, they can run and the key is going to be how my other players, besides Nisha and Metra, play the game.”
Kelly hopes to run a stall and slow the tempo of Kendricks’ game to keep things close.
Kendrick has outscored their opponent on several occasions by 25 points or more and has games in the 90 and 100-point range. But that doesn’t discourage Kelly.
“I think we have the kids to win. Miata (Askew) Kourtney (Alexander), Candace (Barham), if they step up the Way Metra and Nisha do then we can win.”

Lady Tigers 72, Lady Demons 65
The Bradwell Lady Tigers did it the hard way by going into double overtime before handing coach Faye Baker a victory in their game last Saturday in Warner Robins.
“They were a very formidable opponent, especially at shooting,” Baker said. “They shot the ball better than any team we’ve seen. They hit 8 three-pointers in that game.”
Baker said the game was close with neither team posting more than a 5-point lead until the double overtime where she said the Lady Tigers outscored them 20-6.
“All year long our kids have found a way of winning these close games and they did it again up at Warner Robins,” she said.
Baker said Correnda Duvernay posted a career high 20-points in their victory and she was also 6 of 8 at the free throw line. Baker said it was those critical free throw shots in overtime that sealed the game for the Lady Tigers.
She said she felt good knowing that her players were in good shape and able to stay in the game as long as they did. Jammie McLemore played the entire game and only sat for about a minute and a half.
“Mariah (Maternik) probably had her best offensive game since returning from her injury,” Baker said.
“But they did what I asked them to do and they left it all on the floor,” Baker said.
The Lady Tigers head to Stone Mountain today to face the Lady Jaguars of Stephenson High. They are an opponent coach Baker knows very well.
“They are very athletic,” she said. “They are ranked third in the state and it was Stephenson who knocked us out in the state semi-finals in 2003 and also in the elite eight of 2006. Traditionally they are big and put a lot of pressure on you. It’s going to be interesting to see how we fare against them. But I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished so far and I remind them to go out and have fun.”
Stephenson is 25-3 overall and 12-2 in 2-AAAAA region.
Tip-off for the Lady Panthers and Lady Tigers is 6 p.m.
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