Lady Cats Restock Cupboard, Ink Model 6-Footer Caroline Long

Monday, April 22, 2013 - by Don Foley
Newest Lady Cats signee six-foot-one Caroline Long (Model High School, Rome, Ga.), right, speaks with Georgia Northwestern Women's Head Basketball Coach Jim Williams shortly after her signing at the Model High School Media Center.
Newest Lady Cats signee six-foot-one Caroline Long (Model High School, Rome, Ga.), right, speaks with Georgia Northwestern Women's Head Basketball Coach Jim Williams shortly after her signing at the Model High School Media Center.
After losing one of the nation's top rebounders in the NJCAA, Georgia Northwestern's Lady Cats are restocking the cupboard with a key signing here in Northwest Georgia. Model's four-year starter Caroline Long will enter the program as a true freshman this fall.

The six-foot-one Model Lady Blue Devil center was a four-year starter for the Rome, Georgia high school. Long, along with fellow senior post Carla Clemmons, led the Lady Devils to a 19-8 overall mark, 11-3 in GHSA Region 7-AA. Clemmons will head to Lady Cats rival Gadsden State just across the state line in Alabama.

"Probably more than anything we lose heart," said Model Girl's Head Basketball Coach Sally Echols. "She gives 100-percent of herself for her team. She's heart and defense. She plays the help. She can defend. She controls the post. Plus, she has a real knack of getting to the ball and getting it in." Echols, who will be entering her ninth year as head coach at Model, will have a lot of work to do losing seven seniors from its deep 2012-13 roster.

The Lady Cats know all about losing key post play. 5-foot-10 Odessa Person led the Lady Cats on the glass during the 2012-13 campaign and left a huge hole to fill for next season. "She was a monster for us," said Georgia Northwestern Women's Head Basketball Coach Jim Williams. "Caroline (Long) will have some big shoes to fill when it comes to Odessa (Person)." The Lineville, Alabama sophomore ranked in the NJCAA's top ten rebounders all season long pulling down 14 rebounds a night (ranked seventh nationally). Person closed out her JUCO career with 22 points and 32 rebounds in the NJCAA Region XVII Tournament semi-finals and finals combined this past February.

"I really feel like Caroline's going to patrol and enforce the paint the way we like," said Williams. "We are looking for just the right fit at the right positions. We know if we play good defense, we win ball games."

When the coaching staff at Model speaks of the physicality of Long, the praises come fast and often. "She uses her body just so well," said Echols. "She is deceivingly strong. I mean, she's a six-footer and brings a lot to the floor already. However, she's stronger than even her appearance would hint towards. I've had Kendall Davis who played four years at Berry College and Maci Siniard who played at Anderson University workout with her. They are legitimate four-year college post players. They'll tell you she really knows how to hold her ground and take control. She really knows how to play the position and get the ball."

When it came to making the decision, the factors were simple for Long. "They weren't pushy," said Long of Georgia Northwestern's recruitment of the All-Region standout. "Coach Williams is someone I like and he seems like he'll be a good fit for what I need on the next level. I'm just happy about the opportunity."

The Lady Cats go into the 2013-14 campaign as a three-time defending regular season champion. Williams, the region's Coach of the Year for three consecutive seasons, led the Lady Cats to a 15-10 mark in their last campaign. "We are proud of the tradition we are building," said Williams. "But we are more happy with the kind of young women this program is turning out into the community. Educated and motivated young women who can make things happen."

Georgia Northwestern is entering its seventh season of intercollegiate athletics and its third season as a member of NJCAA Region XVII. Open workout schedules are posted on the college's athletic website at Tryouts are expected to be held late this summer for all eligible students enrolled this fall. NJCAA opens practices across the country on October 1.

Georgia Northwestern has campuses serving nine counties across Northwest Georgia and is a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia. For more information regarding Bobcats Athletics at Georgia Northwestern, visit for details.

Dalton State Women Share Lead At Chick-Fil-A Intercollegiate

Rome, Ga. – Two of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics’ top teams are tied for the lead after the first day of the Chick-Fil-A Intercollegiate Women’s Golf Tournament at the 5866 yards, par 72 Stonebridge Golf Club. No. 6 Dalton State (310) and No. 4 SCAD-Savannah  (310) share a three-stroke lead over the hosts from NCAA Division III No. 10 ranked ... (click for more)

Moc Golfers Fifth At Palmetto Intercollegiate

The Chattanooga Mocs women’s golf team is in fifth place at the Palmetto Intercollegiate. Monday’s 299 (+11) gives the Mocs a two-day total of 591 (+15) with 18 holes to play at Turtle Point in the Kiawah Island Resort.   Sophomore Monica San Juan followed up yesterday’s 70 with a 73. Her 1-under total of 143 is tied for second, one shot off the pace set by Coastal Carolina’s ... (click for more)

Howard Simmons, 47, Shot And Killed In St. Elmo Monday Morning; Police Interview Person Of Interest

Howard Simmons, 47, was shot and killed in St. Elmo Monday morning. Police said they had interviewed a person of interest in the slaying. Chattanooga Police at 8:30 a.m. responded to a person shot at the 5000 block of Florida Ave. Upon police arrival the victim, Simmons, had already succumbed to his injuries. Ms. Simmons suffered at least one gunshot wound. At this time ... (click for more)

Erlanger To Open Cancer Center On Gunbarrel Road At East Campus

Work is set to begin soon on construction of a new Cancer Center by Erlanger Health System at its Gunbarrel Road East Campus. Erlanger is joining with a development firm, Chatt East 3 LLC of Alabama, on the four-story project located just south of Women's East Hospital on a wooded five-acre tract. Erlanger will be leasing the bottom three floors at a rate of $16.05 per square ... (click for more)

October Is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Picture a sold-out baseball game at Wrigley Field or Nationals Park packed with 40,000 fans. That image represents roughly the same number of women and men who die from breast cancer each year.  In Tennessee alone, an estimated 900 women will die from the disease in 2016. It is a sad statistic, but there is some good news: thanks to early detection and improved treatments, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Testerman Forum

I badly misjudged how long it would take me to do my “early voting.” I was in-and-out in no time so I got to the Hamilton County School Board’s agenda meeting well enough beforehand to have an “educational forum” with board member David Testerman. If you haven’t noticed, forums and summits and “community enlightenment” groups are the new rage and, as my friend David laughed, “They ... (click for more)