Panthers stumble against J.F. Shields

Published 4:04 pm Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Georgiana’s midseason woes continue as the Panthers drop to 12-6 on the year with a 57-46 loss to J.F. Shields on the road.

The Panthers’ third loss in four games follows a number of matchups against tough opponents in Red Level’s annual Christmas tournament, in which Georgiana head coach Kirk Norris said his team played uncharacteristically poorly as a unit.

“Our team is a lot better than they performed, and we’ve got to correct a lot of things,” Norris said.

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“The experience is one that we need to learn from.  We didn’t show up to play at all, and the results showed.  We’ve got to prepare ourselves better and mentally focus so we don’t have slip ups as we continue into area play.”

And while Norris added that his team answered that challenge in Friday’s contest, a tough away crowd and an even tougher J.F. Shields team held the Panthers well below their scoring average of nearly 67 points per game.

Though Georgiana kept it a relatively close contest for the duration of the game, stellar performances from J.F. Shields standouts Tradarius Murphy and Johnny Stallworth, who combined for 31 of their team’s 57 points, helped them pull away in the final moments.

Despite the improvements made in the two weeks since the Christmas tournament, Norris said that his team still has a ways to go to compete in postseason play.

“They responded and we played a lot better, but we have to be more consistent with our effort and intensity,” Norris said.

“We just have to continue to stay focused and play consistently, and it starts with coming in with the mind frame to work hard everyday at practice.”

Georgiana had three players reach double digits, as Richard Boggan added 14 points to the total and both Jacquez Payton and Latrell Seals scored 10 points.

The Georgiana Panthers come back home for the first time since Dec. 20 to face Brantley High School Friday. B-Team action begins at 4:30 p.m. with varsity girls and varsity boys action set to follow.