STOCKBRIDGE, Ga. - The Alcovy Tigers emerged from the Greenberg and Price Annual Christmas Tournament with a third-place finish after a dominant 65-50 victory over the Arabia Mountain Rams.
The Tigers did not trail for a single second of the contest and jumped out to an early 12-3 lead by the end of the first quarter. They would follow that outstanding defensive first quarter with an offensive explosion in the second as they outscored the Rams 22-13.
With an 18-point lead at the halftime break, the Tigers could easily coast to their double-digit victory. Despite the overwhelming victory over the Rams, the Tigers head coach, Mack Hardwick, was not completely pleased with his team.
"I was somewhat happy. I've seen as much growth as I've seen all season with certain individual players tonight, but as a team, we just had more athleticism our way," Hardwick said. "The type of team we are trying to cultivate is a state-bound team, so doing the little stuff that they missed tonight will help us solidify wins in four-six point deficits and help us get wins against teams like the Eastsides and other schools."
Although Hardwick did not think it was a strong team game overall, he did highlight a few players that he was very pleased with, which included Dylan Driver, Oliver Gerard and Qua Bennamon.
Although heaping praise on these three players, Hardwick said he was most pleased with the play of the Tigers 6-foot-7 Bennamon.
"Oliver and Dylan, I expect so much from them, but Qua was the one that I was most proud of tonight," Hardwick said. "I saw the most growth in basketball IQ in Qua tonight, so I'm very proud because I know where he has started at and to where he is at now as a player, and he's really helping us out."
Representing the Alcovy Tigers on the All-Tournament team was Trevon Howze, who finished with 15 points and averaged 12 points throughout the tournament. Hardwick was very pleased with Howze's growth throughout and how he has developed as a player overall.
"Tre has really been a silent leader. He's really been overshadowed because his defense and a lot of things that he does that doesn't make it to the stat book is heavily needed on the court," said Hardwick. "He finally got recognized for the things he has been doing all year, and he's right there with Dylan and Oliver as the MVP of this team."
The Tigers will hope to ride the momentum from this game into their next match as they get ready to dive into region play.
The Tigers will go on the road to start off region play as they go on the road to take on the Greenbrier Wolfpack on Friday, Jan. 3.