Fantastic Senior Night for Southland Academy Raiders and Lady Raiders

Published 5:59 pm Thursday, January 31, 2019

By Staff Reports


AMERICUS – It was a perfect finish to a perfect evening at Southland Academy (SA) on Tuesday, January 29. It was Senior Night at SA. It was a time to honor the seniors of the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams, as well as the senior cheerleaders and those on the SA wrestling team for their efforts they have given these last four years.

The Southland Lady Raiders got the night off to a great start with a 35-27 win over Deerfield-Windsor (DWS). The boys followed that up with a thrilling 62-61 overtime victory over the Knights on a game-winning three-pointer by Owen Exley with six seconds left.

All of this took place on a glorious Southland Academy Senior Night on Tuesday, January 29, at SA.

The Lady Raiders were led by senior guard Sydney Payne’s 12 points and four assists in their 35-27 win over DWS. Senior shooting guard Calyn Fort scored nine points and grabbed six rebounds on the night, and Holly McCain came close to posting a double-double. McCain scored five points and hauled down 10 rebounds. Senior forward Macy Williams also played an important factor in the Lady Raiders’ memorable win. Williams scored five points, grabbed six rebounds and blocked five shots. Seniors Sydney Payne, Macy Williams, Calyn Fort, Laney Griffin and her twin sister, Lauryn Griffin, were all sent out as winners on Senior Night.

As for the guys, they pulled out a memorable 62-61 overtime victory over DWS on the strength of Owen Exley’s three-pointer with six seconds left.

Southland Academy senior forward Chandler Studdard (12) seen here against Deerfield-Windsor on Saturday, January 12. Studdard scored 19 points to lead the Raiders in the rematch against the Knights on Senior Night.
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Senior forward Chandler Studdard went out with a bang as he poured in 19 points to lead the Raiders in scoring. Studdard wasn’t the only one in double-figures. Two other Raiders posted double-digit scoring numbers. Exley scored 18 points, including the game-winning three-pointer. Not to be outdone, Max Foster was also in the double-digit scoring column. Foster scored 15 points to help send Studdard, along with fellow seniors Bennett Carey and Gabe Roland, out on a winning note.

It was sweet revenge for the Southland Raiders. They had lost to the Knights on Saturday, January 12, by the score of 51-34 in Albany. It was sweet revenge for the Lady Raiders as well. They also lost to DWS that same day in Albany by the score of 32-28.

Both the Raiders and the Lady Raiders will play their final regular season games on Friday, February 1, at the Brookwood school in Thomasville, GA. Tip-off for the Lady Raiders’ game is set for 6:30 p.m., followed by the Raiders’ game at 8 p.m.

The SA boys’ basketball team will play Valwood on Tuesday, February 5, in a region play-in game. This is for the right to go to the GISA Region 3-AAA Tournament as the #4 seed. The play-in game will be played at Tiftarea Academy in Chula, GA. Tip-off is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. The Lady Raiders enter the Region 3-AAA Tournament as the #1 seed. They will play the #4 seed, which is yet to be determined, on Thursday, February 7, at the GSW Storm Dome.

The boys’ region tournament is also at the GSW Storm Dome. Both the girls’ and the boys’ region tournaments begin on Thursday, February 7.