Liner, Smith earn all-star invitation
The Alabama-Mississippi all-star football roster includes a pair of area players.
Muscle Shoals defensive lineman Dee Liner and Florence outside linebacker Rashawn Smith were selected to participate in the annual interstate game to be held Dec. 15 at Montgomery’s Cramton Bowl.
Liner was one of six Auburn commitments to be selected, joining Auburn High School linebacker Reuben Foster, wide receivers Earnest Robinson, of Pinson Valley, and Jason Smith, of McGill-Toolen; Dothan defensive back Kamryn Melton and Carver Montgomery quarterback Jeremy Johnson.
Smith has verbally committed to Ole Miss. At least 20 players on the Alabama all-star roster have verbally committed to a college program.
University of Alabama commitments include Fultondale defensive back/athlete ArDarius Stewart, Foley defensive lineman Darius Paige and Huntsville offensive lineman Grant Hill.
There are still four weeks left in the football regular season, but area basketball teams can begin practice Monday.
For those boys teams that can scrape together enough non-football players, the practices could be beneficial. At least eight area boys teams have new coaches this season. Three girls programs face the same situation.
The regular season opens Nov. 5.
Lauderdale County girls return all but one starter from last season’s 3A state championship team. Red Bay finished state runner-up in 2A last season. Mars Hill boys made it to the 2A state semifinals a season ago but move up to 3A this year.
tournaments on deck
Local volleyball teams are headed into tournament time, beginning with this weekend’s county tournaments before area tournaments next week.
The Lauderdale County tournament is Saturday at Central. Class 2A No. 3 Lexington (30-6) and 4A No. 3 Wilson (34-8) seem to be favorites at the double-elimination competition.
Lexington has defeated every county team it has played this season except for Wilson. The Warriors won that meeting 2-1 on Aug. 30.
“We beat the No. 1 (Class 2A) team in the state (Montgomery Academy) two weeks ago at the Danville tournament,” said Golden Bears coach Melissa Hammond, whose team will host its area tournament Oct. 18. “Maybe that will give us some momentum going into this.”
Defending county champion Lexington beat Wilson in the tournament final last year.
Class 3A No. 5 Deshler (33-9) looks to be the favorite in the Colbert County tournament, which also is Saturday at Colbert Heights.