Alabama Lady Cats: Welcome


Welcome to the Site of the 2004 Alabama Lady Cats Basketball Team. The Lady Cats have been together playing AAU, YBOA, MAYB, and NAYS tournaments since 1998. The Lady Cats are a 17u Team coached by McRae Benefield. This year the Lady Cats are adding a 14 and under team to the organization. Last Year the Lady Cats played over forty games in Alabama, Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina, and Georgia. They have finished 7th in 2002 and 4th in 2003 at YBOA Nationals in Winter Haven, Florida. Way to go Girls we are proud of you! The Lady Cats also won The Alabama Sports Festival, 18 and under, in 2003. This coming year Coach Benefield is excited about the teams chances and thinks this year's team will do extemely well in the southern tournaments and expects to make a good showing at a national tournament. The Lady Cats host two tournaments during the year which offer top competition from Tenn., Miss., GA., and Alabama. The Lady Cats travel through out the south in search of the best teams and competition they can play. The Lady Cats are not about won/lost records but about improving each players game to its fullest. The Cats will play in several NCAA sanctioned events during the year, these events attract some of the best teams in the country. Check the 2004 Calender for these dates and come check out The Alabama Lady Cats
    Please take a minute to register and sign our guest book to let the girls know you surfed in. Our site is always under construction, so check in often to see whats been added.
   The Lady Cats are always eager to talk to new players and Coach Benefield can be reached via e-mail at or by phone at (256)582-4793.


The Alabama Lady Cats finished 4th at Nationals in Winter Haven, Fl. The Cats were seeded 1st in over all pool play winning all their pool play games by at least 15 point margins. I thought the team played as well as I have ever seen them play. We had a let down in the Semi-Finals and turned the ball over several times against a great team and you know what happens then. We lost an Eleven point lead with 1:20 to go in the game. We had to foul down the stretch and they hit their free throws like Champions do, and we came up short 51-55. The greatness of the 2003 Lady Cats were they never quit and whether down 2 or down 20 they believed they would win. They believed till the end they would win Nationals, I did too! To come up short, hurt, but I'm a better coach because of it. I know what I should have done to win and next time I will. I know the girls feel like they would have done this, or done that different. Next Time I'm sure they will! That is what the game is all about, it teaches us lessons about ourselves and our lives, lessons we carry off the court and with us for life.
   The Lady Cats played hard and now that they have come as close as they did, want a shot at that Championship. Maybe 2004 will be the year! I know the Girls will work hard, where that takes us, time will tell. Wherever we end up, Whatever tournament we end up in, I know that it will be a great experience, because hard work pays off, and these girls work hard!

2002 Nationals
Lady Cats Finish 7th at YBOA Nationals

The Alabama Lady Cats finished their great year with a trip to The YBOA National Championships in Polk Co. Florida. They did a terrific job finishing 7th. The story behind the story is they did this with only seven of their teammates. The Lady Cats lead by double digits in every game but one, losing their first game to defending champions, The Harrisonburg VA. Heat by 8 points, after leading for most of the game. Two more loses came in Overtime and another in regulation by only 4. The Alabama Lady Cats know that with all their team next year they will return and claim the title that seemed to dangle just out of reach.    National Champions is not something that every team starts out with as a goal, but the Lady Cats were so close they know that with everyone back and healthy in 2003, and the addition of a couple of new players, (One of which has already committed), they will be a top contender. Coach Benefield was so proud of the girls and how hard they worked, "There were so my times that a player would step up and be a leader, that you could not name them if you tried. We had black eyes and sore everythings. I'm just proud to be their coach." he said after the nine days in Florida.
    Keri Havis of Guntersville High School received All Tournament Honors, with two player of the game votes from the opposing coaches. Stefanie Vance of Emma Samson High School received three player of the game awards and Jeselyn Benefield, also from Guntersville High was selected twice. Stefanie also won the Free Throw shooting competition, to become the 16u National Free Throw Shooting Champion. This is Stefanie's Second National Championship title. She was the 12u Softball Distance throwing National Champion (This is true but its also an inside joke) Congrats to Stefanie, but let me say I think the whole team shot very well all tournament. Check out the individual game summaries under Schedules.