Area Sports...

JULY 21, 2004

Tiger Sharks enjoy successful day at district meet
Jackson County’s lone competitive swimming team sending 12 to state meet
Call it a break- through day at the pool for the Tiger Sharks.
Three Commerce swimmers are now district champions while a dozen will extend their seasons this summer after qualifying for the state meet.
Josh Totherow, Taylor Lacey and Kaleigh Coleman all took home first-place finishes at this past Saturday’s District Meet in Habersham County and a total of 12 Tiger Sharks are headed to the state meet in Moultrie next weekend in either individual or relay events.
Tiger Shark Swim Team Parent President Jo Totherow said that this was one of the swim program’s most successful district championship meets. The team sent six swimmers to state last year and two the year before.
“It’s the most we’ve had in a long, long time,” she said.
The seven Tiger Sharks going to state in individual events combined to deliver nine top three finishes.
Totherow took first in the 100-yard free style in the 18-and-under boys’ division and finished second in the butterfly. Lacey finished first in the girls’ 10-and-under 25-yard short free style and Coleman took the top spot in the girls’ 25-yard butterfly.
Amy Nichols had second-place showings in both in the back stroke and short free style in the girls’ 14-and-under division while Jeremey Deremer had a second-place showing in the back stroke in the boys’ 14-and-under age group.
Whitney Wilbanks and Dawson Knick had third place finishes with Wilbanks’ coming in the breaststroke in the girls’ 18-and-under division and Knick’s coming in the 8-and-under breaststroke.
Rounding out those going to state were those who were part of relay teams that placed.
Triston Reed, Knick, James Joransen and Tyler Moon took third in the 8-and-under boys’ 100-yard medley relay and Hayden McCree, Coleman, Lacey and Gabrielle Joransen took second in the 10-and-under girls’ 100-yard medley relay.
Though the state tournament is next weekend, the team will compete this weekend, swimming in the annual league championships which are Saturday.


Jefferson all stars still alive in state tournament play
A pair of Jefferson all star teams remain the only local squads still playing in state tournament action.
Both the Jefferson 10-and-under boys and the 12-and-under boys begin Class B state tournament action.
The elder squad is set to begin state play today in Americus, while the younger of the two teams will play in Carrollton today. Both tournaments are a double elimination format.
The other team from Jefferson that qualified for state tournament play this all star season was the 10-and-under girls. That squad wrapped up state play this past Saturday after losing to Carroll County. The team started off well in the event, defeating Murray County, but then was knocked off by Effingham County in their following game on Friday. The loss Friday ended things though.
Of the Jackson County Parks and Recreation Department’s two remaining squads, both were eliminated from state tournament play last week. The 13-and-14 year-old boys were knocked off by Dublin-Laurens County and then eliminated by Thomasville YMCA.
The team had advanced to the state tournament in Dublin by pulling out a hard-fought 6-5 win over Barrow County in the District 7 championship game earlier this month. Once in state, the squad dropped that first contest, but then responded with a win this past Thursday against Baldwin County. That night though, the team was eliminated by Thomasville YMCA.
In 11-and-12 girls’ play, Jackson County also competed in the state tournament in Tifton. The team was knocked off 16-4 in it’s first game and then eliminated by Bainbridge 8-7 in the second game.


The summer time race begins
Shortened preseason leaves MCHS opener with Franklin Co. less than a month away
The starting gun was fired at the Raider practice field Monday in the Madison County football team’s race to prepare for its Aug. 20 season opener.
This promises to be a much different summer for first-year Raider head coach Randell Owens’ as he’ll try to ready his new team for its opening night clash with Franklin County under an abbreviated time table. The GHSA has bumped the start of the football season up a week state-wide.
“It will affect the way I’m used to preparing,” Owens said. “But the thing is that everybody’s got to do it. It will depend on how well people can think outside the box.”
With instruction time being limited this summer, Owens naturally expects things to be a bit more sloppy across the board in the state when games start a month from now.
“You won’t see as much a finished product as you normally would,” he explained.
Owens’ efforts to mold his own team into as finished a product as he can will include “a lot of teaching” during this first week of summer workouts according to the coach.
That learning process started Monday as the team went through workouts in helmets and shorts.
With approximately 80 players showing up for the first day of summer practice, there was no drop off from the turnout Madison County had during its spring workouts.
“It wasn’t bad,” Owens said. “We had a lot of carry over from what we did in the spring and from some of the things we did in the summer ... We have a few we’ll have to spring up to speed so we can put it together when we start hitting next week.”
Practices this week will run from 6 p.m.-8 p.m. through Thursday. Full contact workouts with helmets and full pads begin Monday, coinciding with the start of two-a-day practices. The team will hold its two practices between 8 a.m. and 12:45 p.m.
Madison County has benefited


Leopards feel heat as practice begins
Ninty degree heat beat down on Banks County blue football helmets Monday as coach Greg Moore held the first official football practice of the season.
July 19 was the first official day of football practice with helmets for the 2004 Banks County Leopard football team, and all football teams across the state. Only 20 practice days remain until the season opener against Oglethorpe County on August 20.
“We’re excited because it is a new group of kids, excited to see what they can do,” said Banks County’s head football coach Greg Moore.
He said the team is working on getting in shape, running drills and “installing the system” during these first few days of practice. The team can add pads to their helmets on July 26.
“The molding of a new unit is always fun,” Moore said about the team.
After only twenty minutes of practice, the first water break was called and the helmets came off, sweat dripped off of every strand of hair on every head, only two hours of practice left.
“We want to get that work ethic as high as it can be, not only for what they do in football, but what they will carry over into their real life,” Moore said about the intense drills.
Having the difficult task of replacing 17 seniors and two other starters that moved away, Moore was not discouraged by the lack of students coming out for practice, only 44 were present Monday afternoon.
“There are 15 more we are looking for,” he said. “Some are on vacation, but others are unaccounted for and we need to be around 60.”
Not all starters graduated in May, Moore said Jody Seabolt and John Payne are two returning starters that he hopes will provide the necessary leadership for the rest of the team.
“I don’t foresee any problems with this team, but we are young and it will take some time to mature,” he said.
To help Moore as he refines this group of boys into a fine-tuned football team are three new coaches; Banks County graduate Sean Smith, Banks County graduate Tim Boling and Kasey Hanley will join the coaching staff this season. Greg Bragg and Tracey Brown are returning coaches.

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