Excitement traveled up 15th Street and down the Boulevard as students, staff and fans cheered on the girls’ basketball teams from Lucy C. Laney and T.W. Josey High Schools. NewsChannel 6 spent Wednesday morning talking with fans from the schools about the impact of the State Finals Game.
That excitement traveled from Richmond County to Macon, Georgia as both teams and fans made their way to the State Finals. While there could only be one winner, the consensus was that whichever way the game went, it was a win for the region.
Laney parent Anjanette Wheeler was all cheers on the Boulevard.
“Go Wildcats! Let’s bring home three rings,” she said of the school’s previous wins.
Shouts, such as Wheeler’s, rang up and down the boulevard.
D’Aundre Trottie, who attended both schools was excited as well.
“Josey, I love them too, you know. I hope they both win, but Laney more. Laney more. I’m a Wildcat boy,” he said.
And around Eagle Way as four charter busses loaded and left down 15th Street just before 11 o’clock Wednesday at T.W. Josey High School. And down Laney Walker Boulevard too.
ZZ Best T-Shirt Shop Owner Keith Brown made a sale on the corner at his set up shop near Laney.
“When they win tonight then, it will be State Champs,” he said of the shirts on sale.
Brown offered fans custom State Finals tees and other embroidered gear.
He added the business transactions are not all about him.
“We donate a portion of the proceeds back to the school. The funds that we donate are unrestricted and they are able to use it in where ever they feel like it can be best served for the students.”
Wheeler said her daughter plays on Laney’s JV team. So her family headed to show support in Macon.
The mother added, “I think it’s empowering for young women. It’s empowering to show everyone that basketball isn’t just a male sport and the women bring out the crowds just as much as the boys do.”
Coach Jerry Hunter, who saw the 2012 boys basketball team to its state victory, said the women ball players have the talent to go all the way to the WNBA. And high school wins can push them into college doors first.
“This year here in the final four we had our boys, Glenn Hills Boys and both girls’ teams,” he said. It says a lot and when it comes time for signing day, it’s going to say even more.”
And congratulations is in order for the Laney Wildcats. They beat the Josey Eagles, 63-40, but of course as many said it is a win for the Region.