Minden was the best team in the Holiday Classic. The Lady Tiders didn’t win the tournament, but they were the best team.
In their loss to Red River, Minden was without three starters including leading-scorer Derrica Gilbert. Bre Rodgers stepped up with a huge performance, but it wasn’t enough and the Tiders fell short.
This weekend marks a chance to take revenge on Red River, possibly get an early look at district-rivals Benton, and win a big-name tournament heading into the new year.
Even without Gilbert, Minden could have easily beaten Red River. With a full-strength squad, I like Minden’s chances.
In the Doc Edwards tournament this weekend, Minden will first square off against DeRidder, who have lost two straight games but are a formidable foe who will pose a serious first-round threat to Minden. DeRidder is 10-7 and are just outside the top-10 in the 4A power ratings.
If Minden wins early, they could face #1 Benton, who are 17-1. When the Tigers played Red River earlier this year, Benton won 106-67. Whoever comes out of the bottom bracket will most likely win the tournament, though nothing should be taken for granted in such a storied tournament.
This is a chance for Minden to make a statement.
Benton has breezed through their early-season schedule with only one loss, a few weeks ago to Neville. For comparison, Minden beat Neville handily earlier this season.
Comparing Minden and Benton by who they have played is futile. We have to see them play on the court.
If all goes according to plan, we will see Benton vs. Minden at Benton High School on Saturday at 10:30 a.m.
If not, we will have to wait until Jan. 11 with the district title potentially on the line.
If Minden can get to the finals, Red River could be waiting for them.
Head coach Jacob Brown must be salivating at the thought of toppling Benton on the way to exacting revenge against Red River, all in one special holiday tournament.