The Ethel Tigers began play in the region tournament knowing that they needed to win their first game against Nanih Waiya to advance into the playoffs, and they did, knocking off the Warriors last Monday night 88-77.
The Tigers then played the French Camp Panthers last Tuesday night and lost the contest 69-35, before defeating Noxapater on Friday night 67-66 to claim third in the Region 5-1A Tournament.
In the first game the Tigers were able to outscore the Nanih Waiya Warriors 30-16 in the first quarter.
The Warriors were able to hang around in the second quarter, but were still outscored by the Tigers 17-15.
The Tigers took a 47-31 lead into the half, but the Warriors came out on fire in the third quarter by outscoring host team 25-18, but still trailed 65-56 to enter the fourth quarter. The Tigers never relinquished the lead in the fourth quarter and outscored the Warriors once again 23-21 to take the victory 88-77.
The leading scorers for the Tigers were Markei Johnson with 31 points, Ladarius Erving with 25 points, Bobby Potts with 13 points and Dante Kimbrough with six points.
This victory secured the Tigers a playoff spot for the first time since 1993. In Tuesday night’s game the Tigers played the Panthers of French Camp and played them close in the first and second quarters, trailing 25-24 at the half.
That would be as close as the Tigers would get as the Panthers outscored them 44-11 in the second half to take an overwhelming 69-35 victory.
The leading scorers for the Tigers were Markei Johnson with 14 points, Bobby Potts with seven points and Ladarius Erving with six points.
The Tigers then played Noxapater on Friday night and quickly fell behind 20-16 to start the second quarter.
Noxapater again outscored the Tigers in the second quarter 17-14 to take a 37-30 lead into the half.
The Tigers didn’t have an answer for Noxapater in the third quarter and were again outscored 15-9 to trail 52-39 to begin the fourth.
The Tigers were ready to give up just yet and overwhelmed Noxapater in the game’s final quarter by outscoring them 28-14 to take the narrow 67-66 victory after trailing the entire game.
For their efforts, the Tigers finished third in the tournament.
The leading scorers for the Tigers were Markei Johnson with 28 points, Bobby Potts as well as Ladarius Erving with 14 points each and Johnal Sullivan with four points.
The Tigers traveled to Salem Tuesday night for a play-in game for the Class 1A South State Tournament.
NOTE: The Tigers ended their season Tuesday night with a 76-62 loss at Salem in first round of playoffs.