Many fans missed the brief Tiger rally in the third as they swarmed around former BI and Georgia Tech football star and NFL rookie New England Patriots linebacker Gary Guyton, who
came to watch his alma mater play. Guyton posed for pictures and signed autographs and later was spotted conversing with Lady Tiger standout Mariah Maternik. Guyton said he was home for the off-season and said it felt good to be home away from the harsh cold and relaxing.
The Lady Tigers ended a two-game losing streak with a decisive 52-29 win in Savannah Friday night against the Lady Atomsmashers of Johnson High School.
The win should place the Lady Tigers tied for second along with Camden County, their next region opponent coming to the Tigers’ Den Tuesday night.
The girls improve to 12-3 overall and 5-1 in region 3-AAAAA.
In the boys’ game, the Tigers made up a 17-point deficit, but allowed Johnson to stage a comeback in the fourth to take the victory despite 3 trey-shots by Tiger Mike McGirt.
They are 3-3 in the region and 5-9 overall.
Losing two in a row, the girls’ squad stepped into the Lady Atomsmashers’ arena with determination on their face. By the end of regulation the determination paid off as Seandre Lee paced the offense, scoring 24 points and Mariah Maternik sank 16. The slow tempo of the game was supposed benefit the Johnson girls, but Lady Tiger coach Faye Baker said it suited her squad as well.
"I thought we started out slower tonight and it’s ironic because the two games that we lost we started out fast and fizzled out," she said. "Traditionally this team (Johnson) starts out slow and picks it up as the game goes on. I was kind of glad we had a chance to do that tonight and get back in our old rhythm. I thought we played a better second half."
The coach said she is still a concerned about a few missed chip shots.
"But I don’t want it to become psychological with them," she said. "I just want them executing and running the offense and concentrating on trying to put the ball in the basket. I was just glad to see us get back on the winning track."
Jasmine Alonso returned to the Tiger lineup and, although a bit rusty, she was able to get a couple of steals coming off the bench. It’s those plays Baker said would help carry her team.
"We had a talk with the reserves and we told them that we are not going to be able to win without them," she said. "I told them that I’m just going to have to put my trust and confidence in them to produce and do the things they need to do because we are definitely going to need them in order to be successful."
The battle for second place pits the Lady Wildcats of Camden County at Bradwell Tuesday night at 6 p.m.
Lady Tigers 17|12|9|14-52
Lady Atomsmashers 10|4|7|8-29
The Tigers scored only five points in the first as they struggled to find the basket against a tough Johnson defense. In the second period they started to reclaim territory, but Johnson’s Jarreal Smith had a 10-point run and dropped in 2 from the line to keep the Atomsmashers ahead and even take a 17-point lead at one point, before the close of the half. In the third period Tiger Mike McGirt hit 2 back-to-back trey-shots and the Tigers temporarily took the lead before the third closed with them trailing by 5.
In the fourth period the Atomsmashers put up 26 points to the Tigers 15 to take their fifth straight game and move up to 5-1 in the region.
Tiger coach Pete Woodard said his squad was sluggish and that Smith, a guard for the Atomsmashers, killed his quad.
The Tiger face Camden at home on Tuesday immediately after the girls’ game.