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It's time to hoop it up again

By By Ryan Carter
Working at a community newspaper gives you a chance to do a lot of fun things. Most of them don't change life much for the majority of people, but they have special meaning to those involved and to the people affected by the event or happening.
I had the opportunity to attend an Escambia County High School girls and boys basketball game last week. There wasn't anything special about this game. It wasn't for the area title or the state championship. It was just a regular season game between two neighboring counties. Or so I thought.
Not being from this area, I don't know any of the history between ECHS and Baldwin County High School, but it seems anytime Bay Minette's name is mentioned there are some deep-rooted emotions that surface. They reach a fever pitch when the two teams play one another.
Last week's game was no different. The scores were close and the competition was strong. Since it was the first time in three years that the two teams had squared off, the intensity was high on the court and in the stands.
After a stressful work day, going to the game to take some pictures took my mind off things for a while.
In the girls game, Baldwin County came out strong. The Lady Blue Devils trailed most of the game. But after a great offensive performance by ECHS center, Tameka Crimbley, in the second half, the outcome was a win for the home team.
The boys' game proved to be just as exciting. Although the boys led most of the game, Baldwin County came back in the final few minutes to tie the score, making for an exciting ending. After a defensive stand by the Blue Devils, the ECHS boys added one to the win column.
Over the years ECHS basketball has become synonymous with excellence. Last season both teams advanced to the regionals in the state playoffs.
Our area is also fortunate to have one of the top AISA programs in the state. The Escambia Academy girls are looking forward to an even better year than last year when they made it to the Final four. The Cougar boys are also gearing up for their third straight trip to the state championship game and hoping this time the ball bounces their way.
In a community our size, we are fortunate to have such fine programs. Players are challenged to excel, and their hard work and dedication is evident on the court.
I plan to attend more local games this season, and I'm sure all the coaches and players would agree with me when I say everyone in our area is invited to come join the fun.
Published Nov. 28, 1999