By Robbie Robertson
Winston County Journal
Noxapater girls coach Shaquinta Robinson is ready to get started in division play.
The Lady Tigers have struggled out of the gate to a 3-5 record but have played several larger schools in their non-division schedule.
“I think we are in good position,” Robinson said. “We are finally figuring out our identity. We’ve had to work through a lot of different things but I think it’s starting to come together. We are just looking forward to starting division play. We will actually know how good of a team we are. You don’t ever really know about our district and who is going to do what. I feel like we are the best team in our district and I won’t take that back. If we play like we are supposed to, I think we will win it.”
Part of Robinson’s enthusiasm has to do with the way the Lady Tigers finished their pre-Christmas schedule, beating Sebastopol 37-24 on the last day of the Union Tournament.
“I think the win against Sebastopol was huge for us,” Robinson said. “That’s a team that beat us twice last year so that was a good measuring stick for us. We were exhausted and it was our third game in three days. And we had four or five players that weren’t there because they were headed on vacation. We were really tired and short-handed the girls found a way to beat a team that beat us twice last year so I thought that was a big moment for us.”
Noxapater will return from the Christmas break and host Pisgah on Tuesday, Jan. 3 and J.Z. George on Friday, Jan. 3. They will then start division play on the road at Sebastopol on Tuesday Jan. 9 and host Nanih Waiya on Friday, Jan. 13.
‘We have played some bigger schools and I think they needed to see that,” Robinson said. “I think it will help them moving forward. We’ve got two home games coming up and would love to get to .500 by the time we get to district play.”
The Tigers have struggled so far this season, managing just one win on the season.
With only eight players on the roster, coach Brooks Crabtree has made the best out of his situation.
“I’ve gotten a lot of exercise, practicing with the team,” Crabtree said. “I’ve had some guys come back and just help me with practice so they can scrimmage against a full squad. There are some young kids that could probably help but they waited until the last minute to try and come out. But the kids are playing hard. They just get tired.”