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THOMAS GRANING / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — LaShona Brown looks for room past Brandy Small during the Vidalia alumni game Saturday.
THOMAS GRANING / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — LaShona Brown looks for room past Brandy Small during the Vidalia alumni game Saturday.

Former teammates reunite in Vidalia High Alumni game

Published 12:03am Sunday, May 25, 2014

VIDALIA — Saturday was a blast of the past for several Vidalia High School alumni as they hit the basketball court with old teammates in the fourth annual alumni game.

What seemed like a casual pick up game between old classmates to the packed Vidalia Junior High gymnasium was much more than that to the players on the court.

The men and women’s 1990s vs. 2000s team were filled with former athletes who had once played together for several years, and looked at the alumni game as an opportunity to relive past glories with lifelong friends,

The women played first, and the 2000s team gave the 1990s team a drubbing, winning 41-18.

Members of the 2000s team said it was easy for them to get back into their element, as many of them played on the basketball team together from Vidalia Junior High up to varsity ball at Vidalia High.

“It was just like old times,” Natalie McGraw said. “We all played together from 1994 to 2000, and we know how to play together.”

Brittnay Williams said the game wasn’t necessarily about winning like it was back in high school though,

Williams drove from Dallas just for the camaraderie of the event.

“I came back out just to see everybody,” Williams said. “I hadn’t been home in a while, and I wanted to see if we still had it. We didn’t lose it.”

Thomas Graning | The Natchez Democrat Torrey Dixon of the 2000s team and Ronald Ellis of the 1990s team battle for control of the ball during the Vidalia High Alumni game Saturday at Vidalia Junior High.
Thomas Graning | The Natchez Democrat
Torrey Dixon of the 2000s team and Ronald Ellis of the 1990s team battle for control of the ball during the Vidalia High Alumni game Saturday at Vidalia Junior High.

The men’s 1990s vs. 2000s game was a much closer game, as the 2000s won 101-91.

The 2000s team was up by as much as 26 points in the third quarter before slacking off and allowing the 1990s team to inch back within five points in the fourth quarter.

It was evident that the 2000s team could’ve kept the defensive pressure on and possibly win the game with ease, and it wasn’t just because they were younger.

Nearly half of the 2000s team consists of members from Vidalia High’s 2010 state championship team in Gary Stewart, Torrey Dixon, Quartrell Thomas, Darrell Polk, Demarius Fleming and Quandarius Riley.

Stewart returned to Vidalia after recently graduating from Northwestern State University to play in the alumni game for the third consecutive year.

“It’s always a good feeling to come back and play with the old teammates, every time I come home it always brings back memories (from the state championship),” Stewart said. “And it’s also good to see everybody doing well in life.”

Dixon said it took the first quarter to find his rhythm,

“I don’t know about (Stewart), but I was a little rusty at first,” Dixon said.

But the chemistry between him and Stewart never faded.

“Any time I play with Torrey, it always reminds me of how well we played in high school together,” Stewart said. “We will always have that connection, I know where he’s going to be and I know if I throw it up he’s going to be there.”

At halftime of the women’s game, the Ladies of the Diamond Princess step team took the floor as entertainment. In between the women and men’s game was the three-point shootout, that Stewart won.