Centreville girls, TE boys open tourney

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 18, 2003

Right now is a whole new world for Centreville Academy’s Lady Tigers.

Gone is the memory of two losses to finish the MPSA Class AA South State tournament with two losses to finish fourth. Right now they have a new life heading into today’s Class AA state tournament.

The Lady Tigers, who lost to Brookhaven Academy by only eight before losing to Simpson Academy Saturday, host Leake Academy at 7 p.m. today at Brookhaven as MPSA state tournaments begin.

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The Class A state tournament begins today at Greenville Christian School, and the Trinity Episcopal Saints will face the winner of Strider Academy and CM&I at 5:30 p.m. Thursday.

&uot;The other side of that (0-2) is like I told the girls today in practice,&uot; CA head coach John Brashier said. &uot;Probably the best team in Double-A is Brookhaven Academy. Anybody can beat anybody on any given day. That’s where we are.

&uot;They were more keyed up and ready to play (against BA), and we spent the night in Jackson. I think they had put a lot into the Friday game. It wasn’t that Simpson’s defense was anything oppressive.&uot;

Brookhaven Academy will be there this week, and the Lady Tigers have confidence in the fact they were up with two minutes left in the first half on the powerful Lady Cougars Saturday before falling by eight points.

The loss to Simpson is out of sight and mind, and hopefully things will turn around against Leake, the No. 1 seed from the North Division.

&uot;I don’t know. I’ve got a good feeling about it,&uot; Brashier said. &uot;Today we had one of our worst practices ever, but our girls seem to play better against a team they’ve never heard of. They’re like, ‘We don’t have anything to lose.’ We don’t want to come out complacent or lackadaisical, but it’s like, ‘We’re playing Leake. They’re 37-2. Big deal.’ I don’t know.&uot;

The matchup could be an interesting one with Leake’s big post girl in the middle against Centreville’s Jenae Jackson. Brashier said coaches have told him post Amy Harwell is one of the top three in all of Class AA.

The other two? Brookhaven’s Anna Gatlin and CA’s Jackson.

&uot;Believe it or not, we match up real well,&uot; Brashier said. &uot;They’ve got athletes, and four of the five girls we start were on the team that won the 4×100 last year. We’ve got two girls that finished first and third in the shot put. That’s what I’ve told our girls all year long.

&uot;As far as playing basketball and fundamentals, a couple of our girls are light years away. But our girls understand that. They’ve got that grit and determination.&uot;