Patriots season ends at regionals

Published 10:39 pm Wednesday, February 1, 2012

By Jon Reynolds

The Pike Liberal Arts School basketball teams competed in the AISA regional tournament in Montgomery on the campus of Huntingdon College. The girls fell in their first round game against Macon-East Montgomery Academy by a score of 45 – 24 and the boys lost their opening round game versus Glenwood 71 – 49.

The season may have reached a conclusion for basketball this season but the future for both squads is promising. Head coach Robert Hawkins did not graduate a single senior from this year’s squad and only loses junior Kori Chirico after next year. The core of the team have two years left – Marlee Tunstill , Carrley Barron, Sara Saunders, Katie Ward, Ellie Barron and Sarah Sanford.

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Hawkins has maintained from the start of the season that his team was young but very athletic and mobile. As the team learns to avoid turnovers and lapses in judgement, the future of this team will only continue to improve.

Boys head coach Bob Pickett does lose several seniors from this year’s team but is looking to build as well. Stewart Pinckard , Tanner Free, Alex Tillery, Jake Watkins and Garrett Stafford will depart but several sophomores appear ready to fill in quickly.

Picnkard was asked after the loss to reflect on the season.

“I think it was a good start to what can be a good program at Pike,” he said. “We have to make a foundation for the future.”

Coach Pickett will return starters Chandler Avant, Brian Adams and Myles Loving next season as well as several key reserves from this year’s squad.

The first year coach saw his team improve steadily all season, with the second matchup against area opponents being far more competitive than the initial ones at the beginning of the season.