Region time for Callaway
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
The Callaway Cavaliers are still searching for their first win, and Tuesday would be a good time to get it.
While the Cavaliers (0-5) have come up short in their first five games, the good news is they haven’t played a Region 5-AA opponent.
That will change on Tuesday when Callaway hosts Temple in the region opener for both teams.
The season has been a struggle for the Cavaliers, but the entire team has only been together for a little more than a week.
Callaway won the state championship in football, and that season didn’t end until Dec. 29.
A few days later Callaway played its first game as a full team and it lost to Handley 63-48, and it fell to Newnan 74-44 on Jan. 5.
Since the loss to Newnan, Callaway has had nearly a full week’s worth of practices to prepare for the start of region play.
“The more time we spend together, the more time we spend working on different things, the more chemistry we’ll build,” said Andre Johnson, Callaway’s first-year head coach.
Among the players who recently made the transition to basketball is Demetrius Coleman, whose stellar quarterback play helped Callaway’s football team win its first state championship.
Coleman is a four-year starter and Callaway’s most explosive scorer, and he had a team-leading 20 points against Handley.
Another key player still getting adjusted to basketball is Jalin Shephard, a defensive back and wide receiver for the football team.
Coleman, Shephard and the other football players have joined forces with the players who have been there since day one, including senior Javontay Boddie, who is a four-year starter and a big-time scoring threat at guard.
A key for Johnson is figuring out where to fit everyone in the rotation.
“We have so many athletes, and it’s hard to get them all in at one time,” Johnson said. “That’s something we’ll work on.”
Temple comes into the game with a 7-6 record, and one of those losses came against LaGrange in overtime.
Also on Tuesday, Callaway’s girls’ team will look to end a two-game losing streak when it hosts Temple.
Callaway (3-2) won its first three games before losing to Handley 53-49, and it lost to Newnan 52-51 on a last-second shot.
The season has been a struggle for Temple, which has lost eight in a row to fall to 3-10.
Callaway’s teams continue their region schedules on Friday at Haralson before hosting non-region opponent Harris County on Saturday.
Also on Tuesday, LaGrange’s teams will host Heritage before beginning Region 2-AAAA play on Friday at Columbus.
Troup’s teams are off on Tuesday, and they’ll begin Region 2-AAAA competition on Friday at home against Hardaway.