WINTERBORO – Talladega County Central’s Reginald Jacobs is using summer play dates to learn about his team. Jacobs is entering his first season at helm of the Fighting Tigers, and he plans on using their four play dates to see how his team responds in certain situations.

“It helps me to get to know my team,” Jacobs said. “Even though this is my first head coaching job, I helped a lot with Coach (Damien) Dorsey last year and the year before that. The play date helps me see my guys in frustrating positions; it helps me see them in succeeding positions. How do they handle pressure, a loss, playing guys that may be quicker or smarter? It lets me see how they respond to adversity or success.”

TC went 3-0 on Thursday which included a 50-point victory over Horseshoe Bend. Jacobs was impressed with the way his team shot the ball and with their effort on defense, which led to highlight-film dunks in transition by Crystyle Stockdale, Dee Johnson and Tervarus Garrett.

“We had a great day, we went 3-0,” Jacobs said. “I have been running the guys pretty extensively here the last few weeks; we are in pretty good shape. We were able to play everybody and look extensively well. We shot the ball very well. We had a guy to hit four or five 3-pointers in Tervarus Garrett. Our man-to-man press looks really good. We played some really good solid defense. I think DeAndre Edison had 12 steals on the day. That was very impressive. We shot the ball well, we passed the ball well and we are looking not to be satisfied, but just to grow. It is a new year; I am a new head coach. So I was satisfied about the fact that we were able to find a starting place today with our expectations. The guys played really well together.”

TC Central has three play dates remaining this summer. The Fighting Tigers will play at Ben Russell twice and they will also have a play date at Oxford.

“We are looking to meet our true potential and clearly define our expectations,” Jacobs said. “I want them to win it all, and that is our goal. “

Winterboro had a good showing as they went 3-0 with wins over Munford, Horseshoe Bend and Beauregard. Coach Sheroderick Smith saw several areas that his team could improve upon during their three games.

“We had an exciting game against Munford,” Smith said. “Phillip Cook hit the game-winning 3-pointer, and it was pretty deep, too. We fought back. Munford took a big lead. I think they went on a 12-0 run to take a real big lead in the second half. We were able to fight back in a real exciting game. We ended up defeating Beauregard in a half. They have some good players on that team. The summer stuff got our bench players a lot of good playing time. As a senior team, we need to work on advancing our basketball skills. We have to get our spacing better; we have to get our offensive rebounding position better. We got out-worked too many times. We have to be self-driven and self-motivated.”

Smith scheduled several tough games for his team during the summer. He believes playing teams in higher classifications now will help them as they try to accomplish their goal of reaching the Class 1A Regional finals and the Final Four.

“I want to get our philosophies accomplished,” Smith said.” I feel like certain kids could dominate. I feel like Juttorius Cook could be an All-State first-team or second-team player. He got a little winded today, and he is not normally like that. We want to advance our IQ. We want to be able to skillfully break down every situation. We need to love the game of basketball. That is what I want to see from my players. Our pride needs to step up. We should not be satisfied with what happened last year. We should be working on those little mundane things right now no matter who we play, because we have a heck of a summer without saying who we are playing. When you have a senior team, you have to play teams way over head to see how you respond.”