Panthers go 6-0 at Auburn basketball campPublished 5:12pm Tuesday, July 8, 2014
The Panthers basketball team left the quiet, cozy comforts of Georgiana for the Loveliest Village on the Plains for Auburn University’s 2014 Play Day Team Camp, held on June 28-29.
The basketball camp is open to high school teams of all classifications, and it offered the Panthers a unique opportunity to square off against schools both smaller and larger in preparation of the upcoming season.
The Alabama High School Athletic Association affords teams four play dates for the summer, during which time any number of games can be played.
Georgiana head basketball coach Kirk Norris said that it was the chance for growth, as well as the feeling of playing in the big leagues, that convinced him that two of those days were best spent at Auburn.
“Auburn contacted me about the camp… they have a new staff in place with the hiring of Bruce Pearl,” Norris said.
“After speaking with their staff, I thought our kids would really enjoy attending camp at a big-time Division 1 school like Auburn.”
The Panthers played six games during their two-day stay at Auburn, leaving the Plains with an undefeated 6-0 record and a ton of experience in tow.
Georgiana’s victims over the two days included Dale County, Abbeville, Glenwood, Pisgah, Covenant Christian and Notasulga.
Since the games were against other high school teams, the camp followed high school rules and regulations, excluding the time factor; the teams played with 16-minute halves, meaning the games went by a bit quicker than usual.
Regardless, Norris was happy with his players’ performances, and their ability to play through adversity in a number of forms.
“I thought our guys played well,” Norris said.
“We played in a variety of situations from being up big to down late in a few games, and we found a way to win and keep our focus. The guys gave great effort and it showed at camp throughout the summer.”
Norris added that there were a number of factors for his team’s success at Auburn, but the biggest was increased depth.
With the up-tempo style of play that the Panthers are known for, having more fresh players allowed them to dictate the pace of matches for longer than before.
But to Norris, the developments on the court paled in comparison to the ones he witnessed off of it.
“The camaraderie that the guys have with each other—getting away from home and playing basketball, hanging out and seeing a big-time college camps (was the highlight of the experience),” Norris said.
“It always helps when you win and play well, too.”
The Panthers will continue to practice two days a week until school begins in the fall.