It takes a number of elements to produce a winning program, and the Douglasville Lady Tigers out of Georgia certainly have their share. The Lady Tigers’ roster is loaded with talent and experience, and the team consistently brings a defensive intensity to the court.
“I’m happy with the way the year has gone because the kids are playing hard,” said Coach Tonya Jackson. “We’re known for the way we play defense, and they group is playing hard on every possession. I’ve had several college coaches complement this team on the way they play. No matter what the score, they are going to give 110 percent on every possession.”
The Lady Tigers will have another chance to catch the eye of college coaches in their home state at the Suwanee Tournament of Champions from July 5-8. The event will include 96 elite travel teams, with game being played at the Suwanee Sports Academy just outside Atlanta. The Suwanee TOC was previously called the FILA Nationals.
Jackson’s squad is powered by an impressive group of 2015 prospects that includes Anriel Howard (6-0, F, Ranked at No. 224 in her class by the All Star Girls Report), Maya Benham (5-11, SG, No. 100), Nakira Goings (5-9, CG, No. 164) and Fantasia Faust (5-8, PG).
“Anriel is a phenomenal athlete — she just won the state championship in the triple jump — and she once had 44 points and 25 rebounds in a high school game,” Jackson said. “She can play a number of positions because she can face up or play with her back to the basket, and she is a beast on the boards. Maya is a phenomenal shooter who can hit from pretty much anywhere. She can catch and shoot, and she can create her own shot.
“Nakira has great shooting range, and one coach told me she has a perfect shot. If you are not out on her, she will shoot it and make it. Fantasia is our defensive stopper. One writer said she had the quickest hands in the South. She will get us three or four steals a game, she is our floor general, and she can score.”
Bret McCormick, the analyst for ASGR, added his perspective on the Lady Tiger leaders:
Anriel Howard: “Howard is a good athlete with good size. She can score inside, and she can be effective stepping to the perimeter.”
Maya Benham: “She is a strong athlete with a great mid-range game, and she is great off the bounce. She has a good upside.”
Nakira Goings: “Goings is a very good athlete who is an all-around point guard. Her athleticism is matched by a solid skill set.”
Fantasia Faust: “Faust can run a team and she is a lock down defender. She is a guard who can score and serve as a distributor.”
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