The Blue Tide boys and girls basketball teams ended their seasons Thursday at the 2-AA Region Tournament at Brewton-Parker College in Mount Vernon.
The Lady Tide lost, 50-41, to Vidalia. Long County actually held the lead for most of the night over the Lady Indians, who beat them in a rout just over a month ago.
“This was the best game that our girls’ team played all season, and hats off to Coach (Kala) Hires for a great game plan. They played with intensity and heart and led until midway through the fourth quarter,” Long County High School athletic director Karen Swindell said.
“If we had to go out, this was the way I wanted us to go — saving the best for last, (which) is an underestimate for how the girls played. We played a team out of our league, beating us 44-14 just a few weeks ago. Our girls came out believing they could win. … I’ve never seen the girls play like they did,” Hires said. “Derissa Crawford played her best game of the season. … MiKayla Lovett crashed the boards (all night) like it was the last possession of the game, and that’s what kept us in it. … Toni Johnson also played her best game of the season. … Raven Rose continued to be dominant on defense … and freshmen Kyana Calhoun and Caitlin Wingate played their roles on the court and didn’t crumble to the pressure of the veteran Vidalia players.”
With the season over, Hires reflected on her first year as the Lady Tide head coach.
“I have learned so much this season about dealing with players on the court, at school and at home. We went through a lot of ups and downs together this season, and I am grateful I was given the opportunity to work with these girls. It’s hard to believe that this is the same group of girls I met last year. Hustle and heart have set them apart, (and) I am proud of how far they have come over the past few months,” Hires said.
The Lady Tide finished their year with a 5-14 record, wining two of their final three games.
The Blue Tide lost, 74-55, to Jeff Davis High School and finished their season with a 13-13 record. Head coach Deshon Brock had little to say about the game against the Yellow Jackets or the year as a whole.
“We did not play well, (and) it was a tough way for the season to end,” Brock said.