Odds improve for Greenville with area tourney in Eufaula

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 9, 2006

Greenville boys varsity basketball coach Victor Smith has never said that he was a betting man.

But he does like his team's odds in the Class 5A, Area 3 Tournament in Eufaula starting Friday.

Greenville, which enters the tournament as the second seed, will face tournament No. 3 seed Charles Henderson Friday to open the area tournament.

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The Trojans beat Greenville in back to back area matchups earlier this season, but Smith likes the odds that are against Charles Henderson.

&#8220I always tell my guys that it's hard to beat a team three times in a season,” he said. &#8220So, yeah, I do like our chances Friday night.”

Charles Henderson originally was crowned the area champion and host of the upcoming area tournament, but the Trojans were penalized by the Alabama High School Athletic Association for playing an area game beyond the set deadline by the AHSAA.

So Charles Henderson was stripped of the area title, and Eufaula was crowned the regular-season champ and host for the tournament.

&#8220That’s pretty big for us,” Eufaula coach Mike Henry told the Eufaula Tribune. &#8220We’re hoping to get a tremendous turnout of fans and let the sixth man play a part for us.”

Greenville (13-12) comes into Friday's tournament semifinal matchup with Charles Henderson winners of three straight games.

The Tigers closed out the regular season with a 62-56 win at Class 3A state runner-up, Central-Hayneville. Greenville outscored the Lions 21-15 in the final period to get the win.

Edward Searight led the Tigers with 18 points, while Isiah Mack chipped in 12.

Smith hopes his team is peaking at the right time.

&#8220If we reach our peak, this is the time to do it,” he said. &#8220I like the way we are playing right now, because our guard play has improved tremendously.”

Georgiana also opens area tournament play Friday at Excel. The Panthers take on Red Level, which split with Georgiana during the regular season.

McKenzie opened the Class 1A, Area 3 tournament Tuesday night at J.F. Shields against Pleasant Home.

Meanwhile, the McKenzie Lady Tigers now know which team it will face in the tournament semifinals on Thursday.

Florala eliminated Pleasant Home 60-50 in the opening round of the area tournament in McKenzie on Monday.

McKenzie will face Florala Thursday at 7:30 p.m.