Lady Eagles refocused after losing ranking

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 3, 2007

For the first time since Dec. 21, the Goshen High School Lady Eagles are unranked, and head coach Fred Lowery couldn't be happier.

After being unranked in the Alabama Sports Writers Association Preseason Poll, the Lady Eagles had worked their way to a No. 8 ranking in the Jan. 25th poll, but just one day later, Goshen suffered a 42-40 loss at the hands of Class 2A, Area 2 rival Georgiana High School, knocking the Lady Eagles out of the top 10.

&#8220I'm glad we fell out (of the top 10),” Lowery said. &#8220It's a reality check for us. We had started to believe that we could just walk out on the court and win games.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

According to Lowery, that was never more evident than in the Lady Eagles' loss to the Lady Panthers on Jan. 26.

&#8220We didn't give a good effort,” he said.

&#8220We just didn't play well. We didn't play like a Goshen team. We didn't communicate, we didn't hustle, we didn't play with energy and we didn't have any enthusiasm. We just wanted to walk out there and have Georgiana hand it to us, and that didn't happen. You never want to lose, but I think losing that game when we did might be the best thing for us.”

While the Lady Eagles enjoyed their run in the top 10, a ranking was never the end goal for the squad.

&#8220That was just a plus,” Lowery said. &#8220All of our goals are still out there. We wanted to win the area, and we did that. We wanted to host the area tournament, and we're going to do that. We want to make it to host the sub regionals, make it regionals and then make it to state. Those were our goals coming into the season, and we can still do all of those things without a ranking. If anything, I think we might even have a better chance of doing those things because our girls are more focused now.”

That may spell bad news for the Pike County High School Lady Bulldogs who will travel to Goshen tonight to square off with the Lady Eagles in what will be the regular-season finale for both teams.

&#8220It's always a big game when we play Pike County,” Lowery said. &#8220It doesn't take much to get the girls excited about playing this game, but I think they will come out even more focused because this is our first chance to get out on the court since we lost to Georgiana. I know they want to get a win to get past that Georgiana loss, and you always want to beat Pike County because it's a rivalry game. These girls know each other, so this is a game that has bragging rights attached to it. It should be fun. I think our girls will come out and play well, and I think Pike County's girls will come out and play a tough game.”

The Lady Bulldogs and the Lady Eagles will face off at 5:30 p.m. at the GHS gymnasium.