ALBANY — When Lewis Smith begins to talk about 2013 Dougherty County Thanksgiving Shootout, his eyes light up with excitement.
The fifth annual event will feature nine area girls basketball teams, as well as spotlighting dance and cheerleading squads. The tournament begins at 2:30 p.m. on Friday at Westover High School with four games, then picks back up on Saturday at 2:30 with four more games.
“We have nine teams, and I believe it’s going to be some enjoyable basketball,” Smith said. “Hopefully, people will come out and support the girls.”
The shootout will feature Dougherty County schools Albany, Dougherty, Monroe and Westover as well as area schools Bainbridge, Early County, Lee County, Terrell County and Thomas County Central.
Albany High will meet Early County in the opening game Friday at 2:30 p.m., followed by Dougherty-Terrell County at 4 p.m., Monroe-Bainbridge at 5:30 p.m. and host Westover against Thomas County Central at 7 p.m.
On Saturday, Albany will tackle Thomas County Central in the first game at 2:30 p.m. Dougherty will meet Early County at 4 p.m., followed by Monroe against Lee County at 5:30 p.m. and Bainbridge against Westover at 7 p.m.
Smith said other schools in the area had expressed interest, but with Thanksgiving being a week later than usual, the teams had other obligations.
It could be a preview of postseason girls basketball in Region 1-AAAAA and Region 1-AAAA.
“Lee County, Thomas County Central and Bainbridge, they are all in the same region in Region 1-AAAAA,” Smith said. “Then the Lady Tornadoes and Dougherty are going to major players in Region 1-AAAA, while Albany High is always scrappy.”
Smith added that Early County is an “up-and-coming team” and Terrell County always plays hard.
Tickets are $6 and are good for the entire day.
“We’re going to have fun with it,” Smith said.