0409-COY Jesse Foster.jpg (copy) (copy)

Dadeville boys basketball is into Elite Eight.

Traveling to enemy territory Friday, the Dadeville Tigers pulled off a 57-48 victory to punch their second straight ticket to the Elite Eight.

It’s big for the Tigers being that it’s their second straight visit to Elite Eight and head coach Jesse Foster was excited.

“Two years in a row, like I said, we’re trying to do good things around here,” Foster said. “We’re trying to do things the right way – and we’re doing it the right way and enjoying it while we doing it.”

The Tigers were able to topple Houston Academy but the game was still close. Around halftime, the Tigers were able to enter halftime 30-22 but the fact that the last game may have affected the program was on Foster’s mind.

“They played well enough to win the ball game,” Foster said. “I wasn’t too pleased with how we played but I’ll take the win.”

Dadeville didn’t have as smooth of a season as many would think. The Tigers lost their coach early in the season due to COVID-19 but Foster was able to return after assistant coach Curtis Sharpe inherited the helm for the first part of the season.

It wasn’t just one person who kept the Tigers alive this season, it was a team effort and Foster agrees.

“I’m just blessed, I was battling COVID-19, the flu and pneumonia at the same time,” Foster said. “Thank God I’ve got some good assistant coaches that do the same thing every day. It’s just like I’m there when I’m not and they did a great job keeping the team together and working them and thank God I made it back.”

The next game for the Tigers is against Montgomery Academy and it’s at the neutral site Garrett Coliseum. But in essence, it’s the second straight road trip for the Tigers and could be an advantage.

“It’s a neutral site now, we ain’t gotta go in nobody else house to win a ball-game,” Foster said.

Last season, the Tigers’ season ended in Garrett Coliseum. There is a hope that the program can make it further in 2021 with their loaded roster centered around PJ Eason.

“Last year, it hurt him that we lost,” Foster admitted. “We’re gonna try our best to go a little further this time.”

Although fans are limited in attendance due to COVID-19 restrictions, the Tigers do appreciate them. Foster says if there was any way for fans to get a spirit bus, they’d get one.

“If we were able to get a fan bus, we’d get one or two,” Foster said. “They’re excited around town and we’re excited too. We’re excited to represent Dadeville High School.”

Sports Editor

Darius Goodman graduated from South Carolina State University in 2015 and returned to Georgia as a sports journalist. 2017 Award-winning sports journalist.