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|Vidalia, Ferriday begin playoffs|
Vidalia High and Ferriday High boys basketball teams begin playoffs Friday as the Vikings host Jena, while Ferriday will travel to Lakeside for a first-round playoff contest.
Vidalia, which was rated No. 1 in power ratings in Class 3A according to kenramsey.com last week, slipped to No. 2 behind Plaquemine.
Jena is rated No. 31.
"It's time for us to get re-focused," said Vidalia coach Robert Sanders. "It's a new season. One game and it can all be over."
Vidalia was seeded No. 9 last year, but lost to Winnfield by one point in the first round.
"That is certainly in the back of our players' minds," Sanders said.
Ferriday is rated at No. 27 in Class 2A, while Lakeside is No. 6.
Ferriday lost to St. Thomas Aquinas in the Class 2A state finals last year, but lost several seniors from that squad.
Ferriday is 12-16 on the season after going 6-2 in District 2-2A.
The Trojans defeated Sicily Island by three points Friday and beat Winnsboro in Winnsboro by three points Tuesday in games added to get ready for the playoffs.
"I think the game at Winnsboro really helped us because we have not played well on the road," said Trojan coach Glen Henderson. "It's a new season and I told the guys everybody is 0-0. There is no pressure on us. We have a couple of seniors who know about playing in this kind of atmosphere."
Vidalia defeated Buckeye Friday in its final regular season game at Deville.
Buckeye attempted to take the air out of the ball, which worked for one quarter before the Vikings decided to take the ball out of their hands.
Vidalia picked up its defensive intensity in the second quarter after leading only 13-6 at the end of the first quarter and outscored the Panthers 29-11 on its way to an 88-29 win in its final regular season game of the year.
"We knew they were down because they had some players quit," Sanders said. "But they like to hold the ball and in a low-scoring game anything can happen. Our players were determined not to lose this one."
Vidalia outscored Buckeye 29-6 in the third period and 18-6 in the final quarter.
Quartrell Thomas led the Viings with 20 points, while Torrey Dixon added 19. Jacob McGraw chipped in 12, while Louis Whitley and Gary Stewart added 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Vidalia's only loss coming to Sicily Island on Dec. 3.
"It might have been a good thing because there was not that pressure of staying undefeated," Sanders said.
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