March 4, 2021

Lady Braves season ends with road loss to Indians

Junior Lady Brave Sophia Long goes to the basket during Friday night’a State Playoff game at Chattooga (Photo courtesy of Steven Eckhoff)

(Summerville, GA) — The Lady Braves season ended Friday night with a 76-53 road loss to the No. 2 seeded Chattooga Indians in Summerville, GA.

The Lady Braves battle to keep the game close in the first half and trailed 40-30 at the half before a strong run by the home team to open the third quarter gave the Indians an insurmountable lead.

Senior Tori Caldwell had a stellar performance in the loss to close out her high school career — scoring 16 while bringing down 10 rebounds for the double-double.

Junior Sophia Long also scored 16 while sophomore Zekylah Boyd had 10. Freshman Jasmine Owens led the way on the glass with 13 rebounds. Senior Morgan Kay scored four points and had three assists in her final game as a Lady Brave.

Coach Helen Akins was very proud of the hard work and effort her squad put in from summer workouts all the way through the season.

“I’m just so proud of these girls. It’s just heart-breaking because these kids just love it so much and they are so close and they do everything together and they love each other so much — you just want so bad to see them have success. They were so fun to coach and be around they are just all good people,” says Akins.

She says her only two senior players will be missed very much both on and off the court.

“We will really miss our two seniors,” says Akins. “It was so fun to watch Morgan fall in love with basketball and become such a leader for us — she was so crucial in motivating her teammates this year from summer workouts and all the way through the season. She received our leadership award at summer camp.”

“Tori was our spiritual leader on and off the court — leading devotions and always supporting her teammates whether she was in the game or not.  You just know that this really means something to her. Tori is one of those kids that just finds a way to play her very best with what she’s got — she’s a worker bee that is going to be successful at whatever she does in the future.”

Akins says that her returning starters for next season were all crucial and will be a great core to build off of along with come talented middle school Lady Braves that will be moving over the the high school.

“Sophia Long just had such a breakout season as did our newcomer Zekylah Boyd and Hermonie Garza — they all played so well for us this year as did freshman Jasmine Owens. Jasmine was really big for us when we were dealing with those injuries during the season,” said Akins.

Several Lady Braves were recognized for their efforts with Region 5-AA postseason awards.

Sophia Long was selected for 1st Team All Region. Morgan Kay, Zekyalh Boyd, and Jasmine Owens were selected for 2nd team All Region. Tori Caldwell and Hermonie Garza were chosen as Honorable Mentions.

Caldwell, Kay, Garza, Long, Briana Labaff, Lynsey Glover, and Mykhia Echols were named to the All-Academic Region 5-AA team.

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