by Alan B. Gibson
Lady Dawgs are Champs
A funny thing happened on the way to 2013 with our Lady Bulldogs squad as they played their way through their own holiday tournament. They made the transformation from a young squad that seemed unable to get things going in much of any fashion – into a squad that suddenly seems to “get it”.
When the smoke had cleared in last week’s Best of the Lakes Holiday Classic, the Lady Dawgs had claimed something that has eluded them for several seasons – a championship.
I first began seeing the transformation in our Lady Dawgs not in one of their three victories that came in back to back to back fashion, but instead in their tournament debut that resulted in a Clinton County loss in the Classic opener against Cumberland County on Thursday night.
It wasn’t the loss that counted – it was fact that Clinton County shouldn’t have lost and, in fact, were in a position to take the win against the Lady Panthers that was the first sign that things were coming together for Coach Darrell Thompson’s Lady Dawgs – not once, but twice.
Eventually losing in a late night double-overtime thriller, Clinton County kept coming to the front in that contest, battling back from a double-digit deficit to hold the lead as the final seconds ticked off the clock in regulation play, and again at the end of the first overtime.
In both instances, the Lady Dawgs saw their opponent put in a last second three point basket to force not only the first, but the second overtime period. Also in both instances, Clinton County seemed perched to claim the victory, and both times, having that victory snatched out from under them didn’t result in their giving up, but rather head into the next period with a renewed vigor.
That’s the kind of attitude that fans have been waiting on for a while, and last week, during the tournament – it finally reared it’s long awaited head.
Following that tournament opening double OT loss, Clinton County put together three straight victory performances that allowed them to lay claim to their own championship. Championships are nothing new to our storied Lady Bulldog program, but they have been few and far between for the past several years.
So, what’s ahead for our Lady Dawgs in the 2013 portion of the season?
If last week’s tournament was any indication – and we fans have to believe it was – then expect the next two and a half months to be a lot more fun for everyone following our Lady Dawgs.
Get on board now – I think this is going to be a good trip.
Congrats girls – it’s been a long time coming.