The distance between Tanner and LaFayette is more than 200 miles but their schools’ high school programs share a rich tradition in boys basketball.
No. 1 Tanner (29-4) will tangle with unranked LaFayette (21-11) on Friday at the Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Center. On the line for both teams is the opportunity to snag a third state championship.
Tanner has 12 state tournament appearances, with a 2A title in 2011 and a 3A championship in 1986. LaFayette, which is located about 24 miles north of Auburn, has nine state appearances and a pair of 3A titles from 2002 and 1989.
Even though the goal for both squads is the same, each have played a different role this season as Tanner has been a heavy favorite to win its second title in three years, and LaFayette has spent the season flying under the radar.
The Rattlers were ranked third in the preseason ASWA poll, and moved to the top ranking on Jan. 10. The Bulldogs haven’t been in the state poll at all this season, or received a single top-10 vote.
See Thursday's print edition of the News Courier for the full story.