The Tigers went 23-10 on the season and fell to Paul Bryant in the Class 5A Regional Tournament. Talladega only dropped one game to a county foe this season. The Tigers also reclaimed the County crown after three years of falling short. For their accomplishments, the Tigers had five players to earn Class 4-5A All-Talladega County honors.
“Our team was so balanced this year that we had a lot of people that could star each night,” Talladega head coach Chucky Miller said. “They settled into a good team concept and that is what made us pretty good this year.”
Ahmad Gooden earned first team honors for Talladega. Gooden was hard to handle in the low post. The junior averaged 12 points per game and nine rebounds for the Tigers.
“Ahmad was probably our most consistent player all year,” Miller said. “He played the best in big games for us. He averaged 12 points a game and nine rebounds. It was a very balanced year for him.”
Trey Riggins earned first team honors for Talladega. Riggins’s ability to create turnovers in Talladega’s press defense was one of the reasons Talladega was successful this season.
“He was a very good penetrater,” Miller said. “He was probably one of the top two of three of all the guards around here in penetration and carrying the ball to the basket. That is what every one told me about him. They could not keep him in front of them. He got to the basket; if he didn’t finish, he could hit the other people for shots. A lot of his penetration set up other people. Also Trey was probably the best full court man-to-man press defender in the county. When he wanted to lock in to you he locked into you.”
Miller earned Coach of the Year honors for Talladega. This season, Miller was able to lead a practically new team to 23 wins. He also joined the 600-win club this season.
“To me, being Coach of the Year is a byproduct of your players playing good,” Miller said. “I think we lost only one county game all year. We were so proud to get the County Tournament championship back at Talladega. They played excellent that week in the County tournament. That is a sign of a good team. Towards the end of the year we had some pretty good momentum. A lot of them had very little experience at the end of the year, but by the end of the year they did an excellent job. All my stuff goes to the team. They bought in, we didn’t have the one star that was going to get 25 every night. What we did have is six or seven to eight people that could get double figures.”
Damion Hawkins and Tyler Haynes earned second team honors. Justin Kelley earned a spot on the honorable mention team.
Childersburg didn’t quite accomplish their goal of making it back to the Regional finals. The Tigers finished the season with a loss to Handley in the sub regional tournament.
“That was the first time Dallas County has been beat at home in three years,” Childersburg head coach Al Barnett said. ”They ended up with the 4A Player of the Year. Late in the season, we had to go play Dallas County and they are good and very big. Then, we had to go on the road to Handley and they beat us by one. They made it to the Final Four. In all their games in Montgomery they won by 10 or more points. We were that close this year to something special.”
The Tigers had two players to earn first team honors in Tyrell Garrett and Deda Bradley.
Garrett led the Tigers this season with 16 points and eight rebounds per game.
“Tyrell was a three year starter,” Barnett said. “I would imagine and I don’t think there was a stat kept on it, but I am sure he is second all-time at Childersburg in dunks. He is a good guy to coach. He had to battle back from a tough ankle injury early in the season, but by late in the season he worked his way back to play really good.”
Bradley averaged 14 points per game, six rebounds and four assists per game.
“Deda just had that pure jump shot,” Barnett said. “He could get to the rim anytime that he wanted to and he was just an offensive machine for us. He was a two year starter and a three year varsity player for us.”
Keonte Estelle earned second team honors, while DJ Jones earned a spot on the honorable mention team.
The Sylacauga Aggies had another stellar season. After losing a team full of seniors last year, the Aggies reloaded and were able to win 20 games.
Sylacauga had three players to earn All-County honors.
Tazz Marbury earned Player of the Year honors for Class 4A-5A. Marbury averaged 17 points per game. Marbury set the single game record for points the 2012-2013 season with 37 points against Chilton County. That night, he set a Sylacauga school record in 3-pointers made with eight.
“I am just extremely proud of Tazz and all the hard work that he has put in,” Sylacauga head coach Josh Golden said. “I think Tazz is as good of a kid off the court as he is on the court. He succeeds in the classroom, he does things the right way and he always gives maximum effort in everything that he does. I think it is the culmination of a lot of hard work and drive on his part. We are just really proud of him. He had a great season for us, being our leading scorer averaging over 17 points per game. He had some really big nights for us. I think this is a great way for him to end his high school career and we are excited about the opportunity for him to play at the next level. He has several visits set up and somebody is going to be getting a good one. Tazz has great basketball IQ. He is such a great team player. He is a very good shooter from very long range even from beyond NBA range. He can shoot it all over the gym. He has become a great scorer and passer. I think the work that he puts in is going to help him continue the basketball career on the next level.”
Erwin McQueen earned second team honors for the Aggies, while Tomas Swain earned a spot on the honorable mention team.
The Munford Lions always find a way to do something special in the postseason and this season was no different. Isiah Gaddis led his team to Class 4A Northeastern Regional tournament for the third straight season.
Munford upset Hokes Bluff to advance to the Regional tournament. Munford fell to Guntersville in the Sweet 16 and finished the season with a 13-16 record.
Tweety Richardson earned second team honors for Munford, while Tavon Lawson and Jaylen Mitchell earned spots on the honorable mention team.
The Lincoln Golden Bears didn’t have a player to earn All-County honors.
The county coaches select players that make the All-Talladega County team.