Lady Blue swept from tournament

Published 6:42 pm Wednesday, November 30, 2005

By By Matthew Nascone
The Lady Blue Devils of Escambia County High School were swept out of the Coca Cola Classic in Fort Walton, Fla. last weekend.
ECHS was never able to get anything going as the team lost three straight games. Head coach Christy Nall said the team looked like they had not touched a basketball before.
The first opponent in the tournament was host Choctawhatchee High School. ECHS lost to Choctawhatchee 50-36.
Jasmine Sanders led the Lady Blue Devils with 17 points. Courtney English added eight points in the loss.
"We didn't show up for the first game," Nall said. "In the second half we came out and played a little better, but it wasn't how we had played against (T.R.) Miller the Monday before."
Turnovers have been a problem for the Lady Blue Devils as they are averaging about 20 turnovers a game, Nall said.
Nall said practice time would be spent working on certain aspects of the game.
"We are going to be doing a little bit of everything," she said. "We are going back to the basics until we learn how to play defense with our feet and not our hands."
Back to the basics will include a search to find the five girls who mesh the best on the court, Nall said.
"We are going to learn how to play defense, we are going to learn how to run the floor and we are going to learn how to make good passes," Nall said.
Next ECHS took on T.R. Miller and Nall said the game was disappointing because of the way the Lady Devils hung with T.R. Miller three days before the tournament. The game ended to the tune of 58-25 in favor of T.R. Miller.
Carnella Lee scored nine points to lead ECHS in the loss. Sanders added eight points, but Nall said that was one of the reasons for the loss.
"We have to have Jasmine scoring at least 15 points because that means we are getting the ball down low," she said.
The Lady Blue Devils final game was against Pensacola High School and they dropped the game 69-48. Lee put in 13 points, English added 12 points and Sanders 11 points in the loss. ECHS went 1 for 12 from the charity stripe.
No excuses are being made for losing three games, but the competition in the tournament was not so easy. Nall said all of the teams from out of Alabama would be the equivalent of a 6A school in the AHSAA classifications.
She said this is the reason she chose to do the holiday tournament. The stiffer competition is good for any team because it shows a team who they really are, Nall said. However, Nall said she believes her team matches up well with any of those teams.
"They were good ball clubs, but my team is equal if not better than those teams we played and we just didn't show up to play," Nall said. "I don't know if it was the holidays or what, but we didn't play Escambia County ball at all. We are a lot better club than how we are playing right now."
Nall said she is disappointed with the way her team played in the paint and at the free throw line.
"We are still averaging 20 turnovers and our percentage in the paint area was about 36 percent (against Choctawhatchee)," Nall said. "Our free throw percentage is 37 percent as a team and that is ridiculous. We are beating ourselves."
Nall said Monday's practice involved running, shooting free throws and more running.
"We are just not in the condition we need to be in right now," she said. "I am going to get them into the condition we need to be in to win games."
Campbell High School out of Georgia won the tournament, defeating Niceville High in the title game.

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