Dan Lampe wouldn’t mind some heart-stoppers early on this season.
In fact, the second-year Madison County coach invites the prospect of playing tough games right now so his team is all the more battle-tested by the time the region schedule is in full-tilt.
“To get into game shape and to get the real timing, you just want to be pushed as hard as you can every game,” Lampe said. “Ideally, we’d play Class AAAAA schools and they’d go down to overtime every game. That would be perfect for me.”
Madison County’s first region game is Dec. 2 against Salem. The Lady Raiders start their sub-region slate Jan. 6 against Habersham Central.
For now, the Lady Raiders face Newton County and Cross Creek when they host the Northeast Georgia Invitational Tournament Nov. 22 and 25. Madison County plays Newton Saturday at 6 p.m. and Cross Creek Tuesday at 7 p.m.
As far as how good those teams will be, Lampe will have to put in some overtime this week trying to find scouting reports.
He said he knows little about either.
“It’s almost like one of those tournaments you go into where you just draw and you don’t even know who you’re playing,” Lampe said.
Newton County is a Class AAAAA school from Covington which was actually in Madison County’s region earlier in this decade. But the Lady Raiders have seen little of the Lady Rams since then.
“I know who Newton is, but we’ve haven’t played them in probably three, maybe four years,” Lampe said.
But the fact that Newton is a Class AAAAA school means that the Lady Rams should be a pretty formidable foe. “Usually, Class AAAAA schools are fairly decent and have some talented people,” Lampe said.
Lampe is similarly in the dark about Cross Creek, a Class AAAA school from Augusta that went 12-13 a year ago.
“I don’t know a thing about Cross Creek,” Lampe said. “I’ll be probably emailing a lot of people this week trying to get some information on them.”