Boys Basketball Update

Updated at 12:52 on February 20, 2018

Success Unlimited wins championship

Success Unlimited Academy defeated the Wiregrass Kings 58-44 on Saturday to win the Montgomery school its first-ever state championship.

Success Unlimited Academy Mustangs

The Alabama Christian Sports Conference wrapped up its basketball season this past weekend in Birmingham and Success Unlimited’s Armanie Burton was chosen as the tournament’s most valuable player after leading the Mustangs to an 18-4 record and the school’s first state title in any sport.

Burton also was chosen as the conference’s most valuable player and was first team all-conference. Teammate Kendall McCall was chosen to the all-conference’s second team.

“Christian Character” nominees from the school were Devin Johnson (male) and LaDaisa McNeil (female).

The Success Unlimited junior varsity defeated Ezekial to finish the season undefeated at 19-0. Robert Willis was chosen as the most valuable player while Mustang teammate Kelvin Reese was selected to the all-conference team.

-Tim Gayle

Updated at 9:12 am on February 14, 2018

Saint James advances to Regional with win over Escambia County

By TIM GAYLE

It’s not unusual to see opposing teams throw all types of gimmick defenses at St. James point guard Damien Madison.

It is unusual to

Saint James Damien Madison drives in for a lay up. (Photo: Tim Gayle)

see the Trojans counter with sophomore Andrew Sadie.

Sadie scored 11 of his 15 points in the first half, downplaying his ability to get the ball in traffic and score despite a physical beating under the boards.

“Damien always takes the pressure off of all of us because Damien is just an incredible player,” Sadie said. “Our team was just finding me open. I just happened to be the one open tonight. Our team just did a great job of finding me. I wasn’t doing the hard stuff, I just had the easy job of putting the layup in.”

Sadie’s first-half performance was instrumental in St. James advancing to its fourth regional in school history with a 62-51 win over Escambia County in the St. James gym on Tuesday night, marking the first time in school history both the boys’ and girls’ programs hit the 20-win mark in the same season.

The Trojans (20-8) will face Ashford (21-10) in the South Region semifinals on Saturday in the Dothan Civic Center at 1:30 p.m.

“It feels good, especially to leave St. James with a win,” said Madison of his last home game. “It feels real good.”

Madison hit a pair of 3-pointers to put St. James up 6-2 before the Blue Devils (20-10) countered with waves of defenders designed to physically intimidate the Trojans’ leading scorer.

“We’ve seen it, they’re just a lot more physical and then they had a lot more guys to defend him, which made him have to work extremely hard,” Card said. “They could go with 23 (Xavier Lymon) on him, 2 (Malik Brown), 5 (Jordaun Patterson), they could go ‘big’ on him. They gave him a lot of different looks and really got physical with him.”

As a result, Madison finished the first half with nine points, managing just one field goal and one free throw in the 14 minutes after his quick start. Those remaining 14 minutes of the first half, at least from a St. James’ perspective, were all Andrew Sadie.

“He can feel proud about what he did in the first half,” Card said. “He scored some key baskets for us when we had Damien struggling a little bit. Damien got off to a good start, but at one point we didn’t know where our offense was going to come from and that’s when Andrew stepped up and really carried us in the first half.

“For him to get scores against that team that is extremely athletic and extremely skilled, particularly when we needed it, was big. And this is a big game. He came up big tonight.”

And while it might have been surprising to some, Madison said he sees it every day in practice.

“That’s how he plays,” Madison said. “If he gets the ball around the basket, then he’ll get fouled or score for us. He played big tonight. They probably weren’t expecting him to play like he did. For him to come out and play like that tonight was real big. It helped us get the win tonight.”

Madison, meanwhile, finished with 23 points, the 17th time in 26 games he’s gone over the 20-point mark and right at his season average of 22.2.

 

Tyler Pines was another big factor for the Trojans, coming up with crucial rebounds in the fourth quarter and finishing with 10 points.

“Tyler does a lot of different things that doesn’t show up in the box score,” Card said. “He’s a willing defender, he loves to get out there and mix it up, he’s a tremendous rebounder, he’s a very good ballhandler and just does a lot of things to help you.”

Malik Brown led Escambia County with 24 points. Demetrion Barnes had all nine of his points on a trio of 3-pointers in the first quarter to pull the Blue Devils back into the game and Nick Davison had all eight of his points in the third quarter as Escambia County made one last run at the Trojans before St. James finished off the visitors at the free-throw line.

“It’s always great to get to the regionals, especially in my brother’s (Steven) senior year,” Sadie said. “Going to Dothan is going to be a lot of fun. Hopefully, we can win some more and do our best.”

 

Andalusia 58, Catholic 53

ANDALUSIA – Freshman D.J. Carter poured in 20 points but it wasn’t enough as Andalusia downed Catholic 58-53 in a sub-regional matchup on Tuesday night.

Andalusia will face UMS-Wright in the South Region semifinals on Saturday. Catholic ended the season at 18-12. B.J. Barker and Derrick Parker each had 13 points for the Knights.

PCA 58, Randolph County 29

Ben Segars led the Panthers with 17 points and Cooper Meadows added 16 points as PCA improves to 24-5 on the season and advances to the Regionals at Alabama State to play American Christian on Monday at 10:30.  BJ Comer added 11 points, Michael McCarty scored 9 points, and Elijah Jones grabbed 17 rebounds.

Updated at 6:40 pm on February 10, 2018

Saint James comes from behind to win area tournament

By ART PARKER

It looked like Catholic was on cruise control going into the locker room with a 21-15 halftime lead. The Knights had few turnovers and were playing good defense.

But the second half was another story as Saint James took control and went on to 44-36 victory to win the area tournament. Catholic turned the ball over twice as much as Saint James and most of that occurred in the second half when the Trojans pressed the Knights. “We got rattled. We started to run it over when they pressed. I honestly don’t know why we didn’t handle it. We haven’t had problems with it this year,” Catholic coach Robb McGaughey said.

Catholic’s Garrett Cook for us for a short shot with Saint James’ Andrew Sadie attempting to block the effort. (Photo: Art Parker)

Intensity is the best way to describe the Trojans effort. All Tournament selection Steven Sadie said, “We made them turn it over and threw them off rhythm. It was all about intensity. The more intense we made it the more difficult it was for them.” Sadie’s Trojan teammate and Tournament MVP Damien Madison used the same description. “I think it describes our year. We got better as time went on and our intensity grew. Today we played defense with intensity as much as possible. That was the difference in the game,” Madison said.

Catholic will travel in the sub-regional game Tuesday night to face Andalusia. Saint James will have the luxury of being at home and face Escambia County.

Saint James Damien Madison led all scorers and was named Tournament MVP (Photo: Art Parker)

Catholic now stands at 18-11 and Saint James is at 19-8.

Both teams shot poorly from the free throw line. Catholic converted 11 of 20 attempts and Saint James made 11 of 21 from the charity stripe.

Madison led all scorers with 20 points. D.J. Carter led Catholic with 15 points.

Madison was the Tournament MVP. Others on the All-Tournament team were: Sadie and Colin Duncan from Saint James.

Garrett Cook and B.J. Barker from Catholic were also named to the All-Tournament team along with Trinity ‘s Charlie Lott.

Updated 9:18 am on February 10, 2018

PCA wins area title

Prattville Christian defeated Southside Selma 59-42 Friday night to take the area title. Cooper Meadows and Elijah Jones each posted double doubles again for the Panthers.  Cooper Meadows had 16 points and 10 rebounds and Elijah Jones had 10 points and 12 rebounds.  BJ Comer led the way in scoring with 17 points and Ben Segars added 14 points as PCA improved to 23-5 on the season and will host Randolph County on Tuesday night at 7:00 in a sub-regional game.

Updated 12:16 pm on February 9, 2018

Wildcats loss to Saint James a major disappointment

By TIM GAYLE

It came quietly and unexpectedly, with only a few teary-eyed goodbyes marking the historic moment.

Trinity, which tied for the 4A Area 4 regular-season championship with Catholic, fell behind early and never recovered, suffering a season-ending 56-48 loss to St. James in the area tournament on Thursday night in the Catholic gym.

Saint James Colin Duncan (yellow jersey) and Trinity’s Jack Yohn battle for possession of the ball (Photo:L Tim Gayle)

The loss signaled the end of an era for Wildcat coach Jack Schweers, who has led the team since 1994. The 74-year-old Schweers announced back in January he would be stepping down for health reasons at the end of the season. His 27 years as a high school coach included one at Monroe County, one at Prattville and the final 25 at Trinity, where he earned his 400th career coaching victory earlier this season.

This year’s team was potentially one of his best coaching jobs after his illness zapped his strength and his leading scorer, senior post player Luke Hufham, suffered a broken thumb midway through the season that left Schweers juggling his lineup to replace the team’s top scorer and leader.

The Wildcats rebounded late, winning their final six games of the regular season to share the area championship with Catholic at 6-2. A coin flip favored the Knights, placing the area tournament in Catholic’s gym and leaving the Wildcats with a tougher journey to the playoffs as the area’s second seed.

“I believed we could make it to the regional, if we could win this tournament and host (a sub-regional game),” Schweers said. “We had won six in a row.”

 

Trinity’s first postseason game, shockingly, turned out to be their last. The Wildcats (14-6) fell behind 9-0 and never recovered, surging back on a pair of occasions to tie the game, but always battling from behind until they ran out of time on Thursday night.

“They came out there smoking, (ahead) 9-0,” Schweers said. “If we don’t get that broken scoreboard, they might have run us out of there. But we got back in there, we just never could get the lead.”

The Trojans led 15-7 at the end of the first quarter, but a malfunctioning horn on the scoreboard clock forced a 24-minute delay. When play finally resumed, Trinity scored the next eight points to tie the game at 15-15.

It was still tied 21-21 at halftime before the Trojans used a 9-0 run to regain the momentum in the game. Trinity trailed by six entering the fourth quarter and never got closer than three, that coming on a Jack Yohn 3-pointer with 1:33 left. The Wildcats missed their next three shots and fell behind by seven with less than a minute to play.

“We talked to the team about being confident about who they are, don’t be afraid to take chances and take shots,” St. James coach Nigel Card said. “They’ve been playing basketball for a long time. They just have to believe in themselves and trust the results.

“We rebounded the ball very well tonight. We tried to force some (Trinity) guys to take some shots that weren’t accustomed to shooting. They hit some, but they missed the ones we needed (them to miss) and we rebounded the ball because he had his guys out of position and not in their normal pattern of offense.”

The Trojans (18-8) opened the game with a box-and-one defense, utilizing the defensive talents of Stephen Sadie on Hufham. When Charlie Lott started heating up from the outside, Card switched to a triangle-and-two defense to keep Lott from taking over the game.

“We felt like that was their best two and any time you try to take somebody’s best two out of the game, it’s going to have an effect on the team,” Card said. “The bigger the game, the more the pressure. I really felt that in a game that really meant something, kids have a tendency to struggle if they’re not having success early. That’s what I was banking on.”

St. James will face Catholic for the area tournament championship on Saturday at 2:30 p.m., but Thursday’s win assured the Trojans of a playoff berth. The winner of the St. James-Catholic game will face the loser of the Andalusia-Escambia County game at home in a sub-regional game on Tuesday at 7 p.m., while the Catholic-St. James loser will travel to face the Andalusia-Escambia winner.

Damien Madison led St. James with 24 points, including 11 in the first quarter. Sadie added 11.

Lott led Trinity with 16 points, scoring half of that in the second quarter. Hufham finished with eighth, scoring just four points in the first half.

 

Catholic whips LAMP, will face Trojans

By TIM GAYLE

Garrett Cook scored 23 points, dominating the paint in the Area 4 tournament opener for Catholic to help the Knights subdue LAMP 57-45 at Catholic Thursday night.

“He came through real big for us,” Catholic coach Robb McGaughey said. “He’s been playing well the last few games. Once he settles down and plays the way he’s capable of playing, it really opens up things for us.

“They really packed in the zone. We had something prepared for it and we executed it well. Once we got the lead, we pulled it out to make them go ‘man’ and we just had the size advantage. It’s not a secret, it’s not a complex formula. We try to get the ball to our better players and we’re blessed to have some really good big guys who can score around the basket.”

Catholic’s Jalen Thomas (32) closely guards Micah Boone of LAMP (Photo: Tim Gayle)

BJ Barker added 19 points to keep the Golden Tigers from mounting any serious threat after falling behind early.

Catholic (18-10) will face St. James for the area tournament championship on Saturday at 2:30 p.m., but Thursday’s win assured the Knights of a return to the playoffs. The winner of the St. James-Catholic game will face the loser of the Andalusia-Escambia County game at home in a sub-regional game on Tuesday at 7 p.m., while the Catholic-St. James loser will travel to face the Andalusia-Escambia winner.

LAMP (14-9) got 21 points from Jeffrey Owens and 11 from Quinn Stone as the Golden Tigers nearly duplicated last season’s success, but failed to get into the state playoffs.

“This year, we played some pretty good groups,” LAMP coach Marcus Townsend said. “We had a pretty awesome run right before Christmas. We ran into a little stumbling block toward the end. Our youth kind of showed up.”

For the second consecutive year, Townsend will have to replace the team’s top player after Owens stepped up and assumed that role this season.

“He’s definitely the leader because he does so many things other than score,” Townsend said. “He takes charges, fighting through picks, so many things that people don’t notice who don’t deal with basketball a lot. But he’s definitely going to be missed. We’ve got to come and work hard in the spring and the offseason and play a lot of basketball against other competition. That’s what Jeffrey did to get better.

“I think Micah Boone is a pretty good candidate for that and if we can keep the twins (Quinn and Mitchell Sloane) healthy, we should be OK. We won most of our games by committee.”

Updated at 5:48 am on February 8, 2018

PCA defeats Montgomery Academy

PCA junior Cooper Meadows reached the 1,000 career point plateau against MA

Prattville Christian’s big guys led the way with each posting double doubles as PCA improves to 22-5 on the season defeating MA 47-33 Wednesday night. PCA advances to the Class 3A Area 5 championship game on Friday night at 6:00

against Southside Selma.  Cooper Meadows had 15 points, 11 rebounds, and 6 blocks while Elijah Jones added 10 points and 15 rebounds.  BJ Comer added 14 points for PCA.  Cooper Meadows, just a junior also surpassed the 1000 point mark in his varsity career and now stands at 1005 points.

Updated at 3:06 pm on February 6, 2018

Macon East repeats, takes AISA Class AA title

 

 

 

 

 

By Tim Gayle

Perhaps it was a foregone conclusion after returning two starters and a key sixth man from last year’s 33-0 team, but senior Logan Goree said the 2018 basketball season was a lot tougher for Macon East Academy.

“I feel like as a unit we put in more work together,” Goree said. “Last year, we would blow people out by 40 and get out of the game before halftime. This year, we had to work.”

Maybe so, but the return of Goree and senior point guard Kyle Edwards, along with super sophomore Mike Murry, was more than enough for anyone else in the Alabama Independent School Association Class AA state tournament as the Knights rolled to their 31 st consecutive win – and second consecutive state championship – with a relatively easy 67-40 win over Escambia Academy on Thursday afternoon at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl.

“I came from LAMP where we didn’t really win,” Edwards said. “Now we’ve lost two games in the two years I’ve been here.”

Macon’s Logan Goree goes up for an easy bucket. Goree led the Knights in the title game with 27 points.
(Photo: Art Parker)

Macon East (33-2) won for the 66th time in 68 games with a stingy defense that held the athletic Escambia in check before the Knights pulled away in the second half.

“I felt like our team had what it took to control the tempo of the game,” Macon East coach Larry Chapman said. “They’re a tempo team. They really want to push it and break you down with the dribble. I felt like we would be able to defend them. But you have to take your hat off to their athleticism and their quickness.”

The idea was to put the ball in Edwards’ hands to break the backcourt press of the Cougars. A couple of 3-pointers by Murry opened up an eight-point lead at halftime and gradually the Cougars fell behind by 14 entering the final quarter as the Knights’ defensive pressure began to take a toll.

“The first half was more difficult than the second because we weren’t boxing out and that carried over from the last game,” Edwards said. “We kept up our defensive pressure and got a lot of turnovers. That stretched the game out for us.”

Goree finished with 27 points, including an 11 of 13 day at the free-throw line, but the story was the player the coaching staff calls the “Little Magician,” who had four assists and one turnover in the first half. Edwards finished with 12 points, including a 6 of 7 performance at the free-throw line, to earn most valuable player honors.

“It means a lot,” Edwards said. “I guess I got it because I control the flow of the offense.”

“It’s a no-brainer that Kyle Edwards is the MVP,” Chapman said. “He’s been that every game all year for two years. He’s a tremendous point guard. He keeps everything like we want it, under control. And when the ball is in his hands, he’s productive. He can hit shots, but he can score from the line because he’s so skilled with the ball, they have to foul him.”

Murry had 13 points as all three players were named to the all-tournament team.

“We won it last year and won it this year,” Goree said. “That just blows my mind. We put in the work and it happened.

“Last year was easy, this year was way more difficult because they (Escambia) had a lot of athletes from football. The first half, we weren’t boxing out a lot. In the second half, we came out and executed. And Kyle handling the ball just makes it even better.”

Macon East struggled to a 2-2 record early in the season, losing the opener to Class A champion East Memorial and another game to Class AAA Pike Liberal Arts, but ran off 31 consecutive victories on the way to a second consecutive title, something Chapman might not have envisioned after last year’s title run.

“My thinking was, now what? Because we lose some really good players and (Channy) Blackwell, who was hurt,” Chapman said. “But we stepped up and were able to win regardless of that. The scoring was what bothered me. But all of a sudden, Brock Taunton moves in. He’s a threat. Logan Goree, in this league, is a major, major player. Mike Murry is so much improved from a year ago. And we had Kyle. They couldn’t do anything (to neutralize him). And nobody can in this league. The fifth guy, we had no fifth guy, and here comes (Neil) Boone. He was amazing all year.”

 

 

Updated at 6:26 p.m. on February 4, 2018

AISA Saturday

EMCA defeats Evangel for state title

BY TIM GAYLE

There was a special place on the East Memorial bus for the gold trophy awarded to state champions of the Alabama Independent School Association’s state tournament.

EMCA’s Davon Barley looks for a way around Evangel’s Kory Gaines. (Photo: Tim Gayle)

“We’re going to get on the bus regardless,” EMCA coach Letwan Hall said. “We’re going to get on the bus with a silver trophy or a gold trophy. I told them it’s going to feel so much better getting on there with a gold trophy.”

The Wildcats walked out of the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl with a gold trophy, winning the Class A state championship with a 48-44 win over Evangel Christian Academy on Saturday night. It was the first win for the Wildcats (20-3) in four meetings with the Lions this season.

“They were tough all year,” Hall said. “I told them (EMCA players) just trust the process. We’ve lost to them three times, a couple of them were close, we’ve only got to beat them one time. We got down 15-2, that made my job harder, but I just told them to trust the process, one basket at a time.”

East Memorial did fall behind 15-2, but their first 10 possessions that resulted in that deficit included four turnovers and three blocked shots, a reflection of the Wildcats’ anxiety more than anything else.

“The biggest thing we needed to do is just settle down,” Hall said. “We weren’t running good offense. The defense was solid. We weren’t getting anything out of our breaks. (The Evangel defense) was almost like a zone, but a man look. So I pulled it out a little bit and went off the ball screen. Once we started getting baskets, that’s when things started turning.”

“It was rough,” added East Memorial point guard Lee Crawford, the tournament’s most valuable player. “I just wanted everybody to stay composed. If we stay composed, I knew we would get back in the game.”

The Lions were their own worst enemy, shooting just 30.8 percent from the field over the final 28 minutes of the contest while committing 15 turnovers during that span. While some of the turnovers could be attributed to East Memorial’s defense, the poor shooting was the result of EMCA slowing the tempo and limiting Evangel to just four fastbreak layups in the final three and a half quarters.

“They had a good game plan, we kind of saw it (in the semifinals against Chambers),” Evangel coach Kerwin Washington said. “We just didn’t understand how to get the ball inside. We tried to avoid contact instead of taking the contact and that was the key. We would drive and … we just didn’t understand how to finish and that’s on me.”

A 9-0 run early in the third quarter put the Wildcats in control but the Lions would rally with five unanswered points in the fourth quarter to regain a brief lead. In the end, though, Evangel would commit seven turnovers in the fourth quarter and hit just 4 of 11 free throws, sealing its fate.

“To beat a team four times is very, very difficult,” Washington said. “Hat’s off to Coach Hall. He did an incredible job with his guys this year. It’ll hurt for a while, especially for my seniors.”

Jamie Beckom led East Memorial with 14 points, followed by AJ Howard with 13 and Crawford with 11.

“Beckom got hot in the second half,” Washington said. “He was a big, big difference. He hit some shots that gave them momentum.”

Daryl Stewart led Evangel with 11 points, followed by Jalen Shine with 10. Both are among seven seniors on the roster for the Lions (24-5), whose only losses prior to Saturday were to Macon East Academy.

“It’s been an awesome year,” Washington said. “Having some guys come back and give us continuity was a plus. We’ve got five 10th graders that our program is going to be founded on the next couple of years. We’ll go back to work this spring and coach them up and get them ready to play.”

Tuscaloosa Academy 44, Lee-Scott Academy 43

Early on, it seemed as if Tuscaloosa Academy could do no wrong.

Later, the roles were reversed and a 17-point lead evaporated, leaving the Knights clinging to a lead they never surrendered to advance to the Alabama Independent School Association Class AAA championship game with a 44-43 victory over Lee-Scott Academy on Saturday afternoon in the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl.

Tuscaloosa Academy (18-8) will play Lakeside (25-6) for the state championship on Monday at 7 p.m.

“Every year it’s a different team, different players,” said junior guard Hadrian McNeil, who had 17 points. “The point of the plan is to win a state championship. We just have to come together, play together, be a team, do it for your family, do it for God. Just ball out.

“They’ve beaten us the last two or three times we’ve played them. At some point in time, you have to step up and be a man and play hard. Do it for your team, do it for your school.”

Lee-Scott (20-10) has had the upper hand in meetings this season between the two – including a 60-43 win over the Knights a week earlier in the region tournament on the same floor – but no one could have foreseen what transpired in the first half as TA hit 75 percent of its shots (12 of 16) to storm out to a 22-5 lead before settling for a 28-11 halftime lead.

A key factor early was the return of Jamarques Darien, sidelined for seven games with a broken foot. He entered the game with 3:55 remaining in the first quarter and contributed seven quick points, playing for 22 of the 32 minutes and finishing with seven points.

“Jamarques is a great teammate and a great player,” McNeil said. “He helps us to be more fundamentally sound. He’s a role model, a leader, who helps us to know what to do, when to do it.”

And later in the game, as he limped noticeably as the pain in his right foot increased, TA coach Barry Sanderson would spell him defensively and put him back on the floor to help the offense.

“Jamarques makes me a better coach,” Sanderson said. “I learned real fast growing up in a coaching family that great players make you a better coach. He gives us a calming influence on the floor. We made some adjustments (from the last meeting) in our zone and I think it caught them off guard. Now give them credit, they made some adjustments at halftime and we were just one point better today.”

The comfortable lead evaporated in the third quarter as TA scored a field goal on just one of its 15 third-quarter possessions, allowing the Warriors to cut the lead to a point on two occasions, the final time coming with two-tenths of a second left on a pair of Jacob Carson free throws.

“We knew they’d make a run,” Sanderson said. “But the lead held up. Those guys have got great shooters and when you can make 3s, being up 18 or 19 can go to single digits fast. But the later it got in the game, those 3s are harder to make and I thought our defense held up at the end.”

Enough to propel a team into the state finals.

“When I took the job, they said, ‘Coach it’s going to be difficult because most of the players left,’” Sanderson said. “We had some tough breaks early, played a tough schedule, but I think it prepared us. And then we learned how to play without Jamarques for eight or nine games and then him coming back is huge. You want to be playing your best basketball at the end of the year and I think we are.”

Lakeside School 63, Morgan Academy 44

Jacari Richardson had 17 points and Jeffry Lynn and Isaac Paige each added 12 as the Chiefs ended Morgan’s Cinderella run with a lopsided victory in the AAA semifinals at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Saturday.

Lakeside (25-6) will play Tuscaloosa Academy (18-8) for the AAA state title on Monday at 7 p.m.

Dione Allen had 14 points and Jay Creech added 13 for Morgan (14-6), which was making its first trip to the Final Four since 1999.

Updated at 11:44 pm on February 2, 2018

Trinity takes Coaches vs. Cancer match with MA

 By ART PARKER 

 “Give MA credit because they fought back and didn’t give up. It was a great game and this rivalry always makes for great games,” Trinity coach Jack Schweers said as he described the

Trinity’s Charlie Lott goes up for a shot and is fouled by MA’s Ollie Lester. (Photo: Art Parker)

annual Coaches vs. Cancer game with Montgomery Academy. Over the last ten years the Trinity-MA annual rivalry game has raised more than $50,000 to fight cancer. Trinity won the game 49-44.

Montgomery Academy had a terrible start and shot poorly in the first half. The Wildcats led 11-4 at the end of the first period and

19-14 at the half. Trinity was back at full strength with Luke Hufham fully recovered from a

MA’s William Norrell goes in for a score with Trinity’s Grant Sanderson attempting to block the shot. (Photo: Art Parker)

hand injury.

But MA came alive early in the second half and went on a run to eventually tie the game at 21-21. Trinity managed to regain the leading heading into the final period and maintained the lead until 1:19 was left in the game when Trey Lindsey hit a fade away jumper to make the contest level at 44-44.

However, Trinity began to hit free throws as the Eagles committed fouls and Charlie Lott put the icing on the cake from the charity stripe with 18 seconds remaining. “Those guys didn’t give up. We had to fight to win this one,” Lott said. “I think having Luke back really helped to get us on track the last few games.

Lott and Hufham had 13 points each to lead Trinity. Jack Yohn chipped in 9 points. The Wildcats will begin area tournament play on a six game winning streak and stands at 14-5.

MA was led by Ollie Lester and Ollie Bear with 11 points each and William Norrell added 8 points for the Eagles. Going into the 3A area tournament MA stands at 12-15.

Catholic 56, ACA 53

Catholic defeated 4A rival ACA 56-53 Friday night. Garrett Cook led the Knights with 22 points and 10 rebounds. D.J. Carter contributed 12 points. Alabama Christian Academy was led by Grayson Evans with 20 points and Carson Hunt with 11 points. Catholic now stands at 17-9.

Prattville Christian 44, Wetumpka  38

Cooper Meadows led the Panthers with 19 points and 6 rebounds as PCA won in OT after being down double digits in the second half.  Michael McCarty led the comeback by scoring all 11 of his points in the fourth quarter and overtime as PCA improved to 20-5 on the season.  Elijah Jones added 6 points and 12 rebounds.

AISA (Friday)

By TIM GAYLE

Macon East sluggish, but victorious

It wasn’t what anyone expected as far as style points were concerned, but Mike Murry and Kyle Edwards rescued a struggling Macon East Academy team at the free-throw line as the Knights advanced to the championship game for the third consecutive year with a hard-fought win over Autauga Academy on Friday afternoon.

Macon’s Mike Murry tries to drive inside in a tight spot. (Photo: Tim Gayle)

Macon East (32-2) extended its winning streak to 30 games with the 44-34 win over Autauga in the Alabama Independent School Association’s Class AA semifinals, but it was anything but easy. The Generals (12-11) played a deliberate tempo to keep the Knights from running and the officiating led to both teams getting in early foul trouble.

“We wanted to play basketball,” Macon East coach Larry Chapman said, “but we look up and we’ve got Logan Goree, our post player, with four fouls. And we have to, some way, try and protect him. If we keep playing it the way the trend of the game was being handled, that worried me. I told (assistant coach) Lincoln (Glass), we need to consider forgetting that team and worry about our team and protecting Logan and let the clock be a factor.”

Roughly half of Macon East’s 44 points came at the free-throw line as the Knights protected their precarious lead through most of the second half.

“It was a possession game,” Chapman said. “You could tell that early on. Then we went to a zone and that makes it even more of a possession game. It was a little unusual and we couldn’t rebound the basketball. My hat’s off to Autauga for the way they played. They were a lot more mentally quick than we were.”

The two teams struggled to an evenly contested 16-point first quarter as multiple players from both teams had at least two personal fouls.

“We’re a man-to-man team,” Edwards explained, “and we had to hide me, hide Logan, hide ‘Boonie’ (Neil Boone) in a zone. That also helped them get a lot of rebounds, not finding bodies and putting our body on somebody to box out.

“It is a little frustrating, but we would rather do that than lose. And when we’re knocking (free throws) down, it’s even better.”

Murry knocked down a pair of 3-pointers in the second quarter to put a little space between the Knights and the Generals as Macon East took a 21-12 halftime lead. The Knights rode a 28-20 lead into the final period and were content to spread the floor with Murry and Edwards handling the ball. Edwards finished with 17 points, hitting 10 of 14 free-throw attempts, while Murry had 15 points after hitting 5 of 6 at the line.

“Coach Chapman told us to run time off the clock and if someone came up, go past them and make plays,” Edwards said. “That’s what we did. And on defense, we had to box out and get all the loose balls.”

Macon East, which lost to Edgewood in the 2016 championship game and defeated Autauga in the 2017 title match, will face Escambia for the 2018 Class AA championship on Monday at 2 p.m.

“Personnel wise, they’re very good,” Chapman said. “Athletically, they probably are a lot deeper. But you’ve got to play. Our guys are capable of doing a lot of things if we ask them to. They did today and that was why we were able to win the game.”

Evangel Christian 52, Chambers Academy 33

The two teams struggled to an 18-18 halftime tie and were tied midway through the third quarter at 26-26 before the Lions got untracked and scored the game’s next 21 points on the way to a 52-33 win over the Rebels in the Class A semifinals at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Friday night.

Evangel’s Ronald Holland harasses a Chamber Academy foe in the Lions easy semi-final win. (Photo: Tim Gayle)

“We were out of rhythm,” Evangel coach Kerwin Washington said. “They were packed in, in their zone, and they were just not going to give up anything in the paint. Our guys were impatient in understanding how we wanted to attack it. We were standing out at the 3-point line with nobody guarding us and they were still stuck in the paint.

“It’s just one of those games you just have to play. The calls weren’t going our way, shots weren’t going to down, but it’s just one of those where you have to persevere and get it done.”

Senior point guard Chester Pruitt finally cranked up the Lion offense, scoring many of his 17 points during that 21-point run along with Jalen Shine, who finished with 11.

“He’s the leader, stepping up and being able to settle our team down and give us points when we needed them,” Washington said.

“We had to start running,” Pruitt said. “We started off slow, real slow, and we weren’t supposed to. They slowed us down and we chased them. We didn’t play our game, we played the way they play.

“When I attacked, they collapsed and I’d dish it off. That’s what I had to start doing. If we had kept taking (outside) shots, that’s what they want. They want us to shoot, that’s why they packed it in the paint.”

Evangel (24-4) will face arch rival East Memorial for the second consecutive year in the Class A state championship game on Saturday at 7 p.m.

“That’s going to be a war,” Washington said. “We’re going to limp into it but we’re going to be there to battle tomorrow night.”

“It’s going to be hard,” Pruitt added, “but we’ve got to try to win. Just play hard.”

East Memorial 72, Abbeville Christian 53

East Memorial scored 19 points in the first quarter and 17 in the second to cruise past Abbeville Christian 72-53 in the Class A semifinals at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Friday night.

East Memorial (19-3) will play Evangel Christian for the Class A state championship on Saturday at 7 p.m. The two rivals met four times last year, with EMCA winning both regular-season meetings and the region championship game before Evangel won the state championship game. This year, Evangel has won both regular-season meetings and the region championship game.

Lee Crawford led the Wildcats with 20 points, followed by Jamie Beckom with 15.

Dre Newman led Abbeville with 19 points, followed by Evan Grimsley with 12 and Marcus McKay with 10.

Escambia Academy 55, Pickens Academy 41

It took a while, but Escambia Academy finally got rolling in the second half and pulled away from previously unbeaten Pickens Academy on Friday to advance to the Class AA finals at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl.

“We knew they wanted to slow it down, but we kept telling our guys let’s try to play it fast because that’s our kind of game,” Escambia coach Hugh Fountain said. “It wasn’t pretty. We missed a lot of shots in the first half. They looked a little tired before the half so I told (Escambia players) let’s keep pushing. If we were tired, they had to be tired.”

Pickens (18-1) was led by Hamner Allen, who had 11 points, and Lee Acker, who had 10.

Tiqualle Taylor had 23 points and Neikel Robinson added 14 for Escambia (16-3), which will play for the AA state title on Monday at 2 p.m. against Macon East Academy, a team that hasn’t lost a AA game in two years and is making its third consecutive appearance in the finals.

“We don’t know a whole lot about them, but we know they’ve got an outstanding coach and an outstanding program,” Fountain said. “One of our goals this year was to get to the state championship game in basketball because we knew we had a good team. Now we’re there, let’s play and see what happens.”

Updated at 9:43 am on February 2, 2018

AISA (Thursday)

By TIM GAYLE

Tuscaloosa Academy 52, Hooper 49

Max Westjohn’s putback with 45.7 seconds left gave Tuscaloosa Academy the lead and Hadrian McNeil added a pair of free throws for insurance as the Knights edged Hooper Academy 52-49 in overtime in the Alabama Independent School Association Class AAA state tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Thursday afternoon.

The Knights broke out of a 20-20 halftime tie with a strong second-half performance from McNeil, only to watch the Colts tie the game late in regulation by taking advantage of poor free-throw shooting by Tuscaloosa Academy.

TA rallied with six of the nine points scored in overtime, taking advantage of three Hooper starters on the bench and a pair of clutch free throws by McNeil, who finished with 31 points.

“He’s had to step up his scoring with Jamarques (Darien) out,” TA coach Barry Sanderson said. “Early in the year, trying to teach him what a good shot was and getting him under control was difficult. He didn’t play very well in the first half but I thought he came back in the second half and made some shots. When he makes shots, it opens up his drive and I think he got to the rim some, which was key for us.”

Darien, the Knights’ leading scorer who sat out the last nine games with a broken foot, played the first couple of minutes before returning to the bench in pain and sitting out the remainder of the game.

Hooper was shorthanded as well. Senior point guard Wyatt Barnett sat out with an injured foot, senior forward Mason Hill fouled out with 41 seconds left in regulation and the team’s leading scorer, Jared Kelly, fouled out with 3:21 remaining in overtime, leaving the Colts few scoring options down the stretch.

“We let a few little easy passes get away from us, along with a few shots,” Hooper coach Tommy Norman said. “That No. 10 (McNeil) kind of beat us on the drive. It was a back-and-forth game, we just fell a little short.”

The scrappy Colts got 16 points each from Kelly and Holden Hollingshead, fighting back from an early deficit to tie the game at halftime. Sanderson wanted to put pressure on the Colts with their point guard on the bench, but foul trouble changed his strategy.

“We wanted to press (Hooper) some,” he said. “I felt like we got some turnovers but we were overanxious and overran some plays, which gave them some easy baskets. Give Hooper credit. They were playing without their point guard, who was hurt, which was a key to the game. Those guys played great and made some big shots.”

Hooper (14-8) was bolstered by a large raucous crowd cheering on the Colts, who have experienced an athletic drought in recent years.

“It was nice to get that,” Norman said. “We had a heck of a crew here. That’s something to build on for next year.”

Tuscaloosa (17-8) will face Lee-Scott in the semifinals on Saturday at 2:30 p.m. The two teams split during the regular season before the Warriors grabbed a 60-43 victory in the region tournament at the Multiplex last week.

“Lee-Scott is very, very well coached,” Sanderson said. “They can put five shooters on the floor. We can’t afford to go through scoring droughts against them, which is what we’ve done the last two times we’ve played them. But in tournament play, you just want to play and advance. There’s only four teams left and hopefully we’ll play our best game on Saturday.”

Lee-Scott Academy 56, Pike Liberal Arts 19

Pike Liberal Arts jumped out to a 2-0 lead but it went downhill from there as the Warriors grabbed a 13-2 lead at the end of the quarter and a 15-point halftime lead on the way to a 56-19 win in the AAA state tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Thursday morning.

Jacob Carson led a balanced attack with 10 points. Ethan Green led Pike Liberal with five.

Lee-Scott will face Tuscaloosa in the semifinals on Saturday at 2:30 p.m., with the winner advancing to Monday’s championship game at 7 p.m.

Lakeside School 40, Glenwood School 33

Ju’Quan Grubbs had 12 points to help rally the Chiefs from a two-point deficit at halftime with a 40-33 victory over Glenwood in the AAA state tournament on Thursday afternoon at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl.

Lakeside will face Morgan in the semifinals on Saturday at 11:30 a.m., with the winner advancing to the state championship game on Monday at 7 p.m.

Bryce Valero led Glenwood with 15 points but 12 of those came in the first half and none in the fourth quarter as the Gators were outscored 11-6 in the final eight minutes.

Morgan Academy 45, Springwood School 39

Britton Adams scored 13 points, but none were bigger than his three-point play on a drive through the lane with 31 seconds left and the Senators clinging to a two-point lead.

Milam Turner added a free throw seven seconds later – one of his eight points scored, all in the fourth quarter – as Morgan earned its first trip to the Final Four since 1999 with a 45-39 win over Springwood in the AAA state tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Thursday night.

Morgan will play Lakeside in the semifinals on Saturday at 11:30 a.m., with the winner advancing to Monday’s AAA championship game at 7 p.m.

Gus Davidson led Springwood with 19 points, followed by Christian Lancaster with 11.

Updated at 8:41 am on February 1, 2018

AISA Elite Eight

By TIM GAYLE

Macon runs over Russell Christian

The game wasn’t two minutes old when Macon East Academy coach Larry Chapman called a timeout.

His team never trailed and Russell Christian Academy wasn’t going to pose much of a challenge in the Alabama Independent School Association Class AA state tournament on Wednesday at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl, but that wasn’t the point.

“He told us to play defense,” senior forward Logan Goree said. “We were kind of struggling on defense early. We weren’t really awake yet. He brought us over to talk to us and just told us we needed to wake up and we started playing together.”

The defending AA state champions, winners of 29 straight games and 62 of their last 64, were leading 7-0 at the time. A Brenley Lippert 3-pointer put Russell Christian on the scoreboard before the Knights responded with 19 consecutive points.

“I just thought they probably hadn’t woke up yet,” Chapman said. “It wasn’t that they weren’t trying to do what we were asking. But this game was important because it was one more step toward a championship. I take my hat off to Russell Christian. They played hard, they never quit, they kept battling. I thought our starters played well.”

Goree dominated in the paint, scoring 27 points despite playing sparingly in the second and fourth quarters on the way to an 87-39 rout.

“Nobody appreciates Logan Goree, but he’s a worker,” Chapman said. “He’s amazing. He goes to work on every possession. As a consequence, what does he do? He dominates inside when he plays. And he works at it. He’s never satisfied.”

Kyle Edwards added 19 points, followed by Mike Murry with 12 and Keiron Taylor with 11 as Macon East built a 41-16 advantage at the half and a 60-24 lead after three quarters.

That led to extended playing time for the reserves as Macon East (31-2) advanced to the semifinals on Friday against Autauga at 1:30 p.m.

“You get the joy of watching your second team play,” Goree said. “That’s always good.”

James Swindell led Russell Christian with 16 points.

Autauga Academy 51, South Choctaw Academy 50

It was his only field goal, but it proved to be the most important.

Autauga Academy led for nearly the entire game before Mason Sikes hit a 3-pointer to put South Choctaw in front with 1:44 left. Passing the ball around the perimeter in search of an open shot, Turner Payton nailed a 3-pointer with 21 seconds left to provide the game-winning points and send the Generals into the Final Four with a one-point victory in the AA state tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Wednesday afternoon.

“He did really well for us in the region tournament consolation game, so he’s able to do it, we’ve just got to get him to do it,” Autauga coach Brad Parker said. “He knew he had to step up and he stepped up at the right time and hit a good shot.”

The younger brother of Tanner Payton, the leading scorer on last year’s team, Turner was between the Generals’ two perimeter shooters, Kendrick Rogers and Tripp Carr. With neither able to get an uncontested look at the basket, it was Payton who finally delivered, scoring his only points of the game with the game-winning shot.

“It was a tale of two halves,” Parker said. “It’s been like that all year. We’ll play good one half and bad one half. If we play a full game, you never know what’s going to happen.”

The Generals (12-10) will need a full game on Friday against defending state champion Macon East Academy, which has won 64 of its last 66 games. The two state finalists a year ago will meet in the semifinals at 1:30 p.m.

“They’ve got a great team, a great coach and great players,” Parker said. “Our work is cut out for us but as I told the players, this is where we want to be. You never know what’s going to happen when you get there. You’ve got to play the game.”

Pickens Academy 70, Emmanuel Christian 35
Hamner Allen led three players in double figures for unbeaten Pickens, which surged out to an early lead and coasted to a 70-35 victory over Emmanuel Christian in the AA state tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Wednesday afternoon.

Pickens (18-0) will face Escambia in the semifinals on Friday at 10:30 a.m., with the winner advancing to the AA championship game on Monday at 2 p.m.

Taylor Owens had 15 points and Lee Acker added 13 for the Pirates, which led by 11 points at the end of the first quarter and was never challenged.

Andrew Marcum led Emmanuel with 12 points.

Escambia Academy 83, Lowndes Academy 42
The up-tempo style of Escambia Academy proved to be too much for Lowndes Academy, which ran out of gas in the second half as the Cougars cruised to a 41-point win in the AA state tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Wednesday night.

Escambia (16-3) will face Pickens in the semifinals on Friday at 10:30 a.m., with the winner advancing to the state championship game on Monday at 2 p.m.

Neikel Robinson led the Cougars with 18 points, followed by Tiquale Taylor with 17 and Fred Flavors and M.J. Jones with 13 points each.

Jesse Foley had 13 points to lead Lowndes, followed by Jon Johnson with 10.

Updated at 8:25 am January 31, 2018

AISA Elite Eight

By TIM GAYLE

Call it an EMCA hangover.

Whatever the cause, Evangel Christian was sluggish in its 73-41 win over Jackson Academy on Tuesday morning, running past the Eagles in a lopsided victory while looking anything but impressive in advancing to the Alabama Independent School Association’s Final Four.

Evangel’s Chester Pruitt (white jersey) and the rest of the Lions lacked intensity according to their coach despite the Elite Eight win. (Photo: Tim Gayle)

Evangel (23-4) will face Chambers Academy on Friday at 7:30 p.m., with the winner advancing to Saturday’s Class A state championship game.

“It was just a lack of intensity, a lack of focus, we didn’t play well at all,” Evangel Christian coach Kerwin Washington said. “It was a short turnaround from a big game on Saturday and some of that goes back on that. These guys are tired. I’m asking them to do a lot. The second group of guys that came in really played well for us and were a big part of the push in the second half.”

Evangel quickly built a 10-point lead, but the Eagles chipped away with a flurry of 3-pointers before the Lions surged back to a 33-20 halftime lead. Washington turned up the defensive pressure in the third quarter and built the lead to 24 points and coasted from there.

Darryl Stewart led Evangel with 22 points, followed by Aaron Alpert with 10.

“We definitely didn’t go into this game taking Jackson for granted,” Washington said. “We knew they were really going to be strong with their guard play. They showed that by the number of 3’s that they hit and that was with hands in their face. They are a talented bunch, we knew it was going to be a tough game. It’s just tough to come from a region championship game (against East Memorial on Saturday) and get focused on another game in a couple of days.”

Alvin Forward hit six 3-pointers to lead Jackson with 18 points.

“That’s him,” Washington said. “We guarded him. Sometimes we weren’t as close as I wanted us to be, but he’s cat-quick. He’s equal (in talent) to (Evangel point guard) Chester (Pruitt). Now I know what everybody else faces when they try to guard Chester. He (Forward) is a really solid basketball player.”

OTHER AISA GAMES

East Memorial 81, Patrician Academy 64

East Memorial cruised to a 23-point halftime lead before surviving a fourth-quarter scare from the Saints in an 81-64 victory on Tuesday night at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl.

EMCA (18-3) will face Abbeville Christian on Friday at 4:30 p.m., with the winner advancing to the AISA Class A state championship game on Saturday at 7 p.m.

Lamar Smith had 23 points, Lee Crawford added 20 and AJ Howard scored 14 as the Wildcats pulled away from a nine-point lead in the first quarter for a 47-24 advantage at halftime. EMCA still led by 20, 63-43, heading into the fourth quarter but the Saints chipped away and trailed by just 10 points midway through the quarter before the Wildcats pulled away late. Blake Reid had 23 points to lead Patrician, followed by Lee McBride with 17.

Abbeville Christian 50, Southern Academy 32

Dre Newman scored 16 points and Evan Grimsley added 13 as Abbeville Christian used a strong performance in the third quarter to pull away for a 50-32 victory in the Class A state tournament on Tuesday night. The Generals led just 21-17 at the half but outscored Southern 18-8 to take a comfortable lead into the fourth quarter and cruise into the semifinals, where they will face EMCA on Friday at 4:30 p.m. Cal Webb led a balanced Southern attack with eight points.

Chambers Academy 47, Marengo Academy 32

Payton Allen had 18 points and Rodricqus Dark added 11 as Chambers Academy raced out to an early 10-point lead and cruised to a 47-32 win over the Longhorns in the AISA Class A state tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Tuesday afternoon. Chambers will face defending state champion Evangel Christian on Friday at 7:30 p.m., with the winner advancing to Saturday’s state championship game. Hayden Campbell led Marengo with 13 points.

Updated at 8:20 am January 31, 2018

Trinity 58, BTW 35

The Trinity Wildcats leading scorer and rebounder returned from injury and coupled made an end of the season stretch run to grab a share of the regular season Area Championship with Catholic. The Knights slipped by surprising St. James tonight to get their half of the title.

Leading the Wildcats to their fourth straight Area win was Jack Yohn with 15 points.  The aforementioned injured leading scorer and rebounder, Luke Hufham had 11 points and 10 boards.

Jitterbug guard Charlie Lott contributed 10. It was Trinity’s fifth win in a row overall since they dropped a heartbreaker to arch rival Montgomery Academy two weeks ago.

Catholic 36, Saint James 33

The Knights slipped past Saint James 36-33 in a lackluster performance. B.J. Barker led Catholic with 13 points. Charlie Ryan hit a pair of big 3-point shots in the second half that greatly helped Catholic.

 

Montevallo 48, Prattville Christian  43

Elijah Jones led the Panthers with 22 points and 14 rebounds.  Cooper Meadows added 12 points and 8 rebounds.  PCA falls to 19-5 on the season.

ACA 68, Holtville 53

The Eagles defeated Holtville 69-53 and were led by Colby Rives with 18 points, Ford Hilyer with 17 points, Reece Solar added 14 points and Grayson Evans chipped in 13 points.

Updated at 8:41 January 26, 2018

Wetumpka 60, Catholic 56

WETUMPKA – Catholic dropped its third game this week, losing to Wetumpka 60-56 as DJ Carter had 19 points and Matthew Taylor added 12.

Catholic’s Matthew Taylor scored a dozen in the Knights loss to Wetumpka (Photo: Art Parker)

Catholic (15-8) lost to Trinity on Tuesday and St. James on Wednesday with limited contributions from its post players, who were hampered by the flu. The Knights travel to Auburn High on Monday and St. James on Tuesday to close out the regular season before playing in the area tournament the following week.

Trinity 42, Saint James 28

It was a special night for Trinity Athletes Friday night, as seniors

were honored as well as long time basketball coach Jack Schweers before the Wildcats took the floor to battle rival St. James. Trinity turned in their second straight sterling defensive performance as they held the Trojans to 13 first half points to create some space in a physical battle. Most of the ‘Cats offense was provided by center Luke Hufham and guard Charlie Lott. Hufham definitely getting back to his pre-broken thumb playing condition, put up yet another double-double, scoring 14 points and pulling down 10 rebounds.  Lott threw in 13 points on an assortment of shots.  With the win, Trinity goes to 11-5 overall and 4-2 in the Area, remaining tied with leader Catholic in the loss column. The Cats conclude Area play next week with a trip to LAMP on Monday and a home game with BTW on Tuesday.       Charlie Lott’s greatest contribution to the win, however, was his defensive effort on Trojan high scoring guard Damien Madison who hung 43 on the Wildcats two weeks ago.  Lott held him to 11 points Friday.  St. James is 3-2 in the Area making for an exciting stretch run.

Macon East Academy 99, Emmanuel 35

CECIL – Five players scored in double figures as Macon East Academy cruised into the finals of the Class AA Region 1 tournament with a 99-35 win in the Macon East gym on Friday night.

Macon East won its first two games in the tournament by a combined score of 160-46 and will now face area rival Lowndes for the region title on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. Emmanuel will play Autauga in the consolation game at 10:30 a.m. All four teams will advance to the AISA Elite Eight next Wednesday at the Multiplex.

Logan Goree, Kyle Edwards and Mike Murry all scored 20 points in the rout, while Brock Taunton added 16 and Ethan Honaker had 10.

Evangel Christian 58, Chamber 33

Kory Gaines’ 11 points and 15 rebounds help lead Evangel to the win over Chambers in the semifinals of the Class 1A Region 1 tournament at Macon-East Academy. Jalen Shine had 9 points and 3 rebounds. Chester Pruitt and Joseph Love finished with nine points each. The Lions (21-4) will play East Memorial on Saturday at 7:30.

Hooper Academy 53, Pike Liberal Arts 46

GREENVILLE – Sophomore Holden Hollingshead led a balanced attack with 18 points and six rebounds to lead the Colts to a 53-46 win over Pike Liberal in the semifinals of the Class AAA Region 2 tournament at Fort Dale Academy.

Hooper (13-7), which never trailed, will play Lakeside School in the region championship game on Saturday at 4:30 p.m., while Pike Liberal Arts (10-7) will face Morgan Academy in the consolation game at 1:30 p.m. All four teams will advance to the AISA Elite Eight at the Multiplex on Thursday.

Seniors Mason Hill and Trace Edwards combined for 18 points and 16 rebounds while junior Jared Kelly chipped in 13 points.

Lee-Scott Academy 60, Tuscaloosa Academy 43

Tuscaloosa Academy grabbed a brief lead in its regional battle with Lee-Scott but a flurry of 3-pointers early in the fourth quarter helped the Warriors pull away for a 60-43 victory in the AISA Class AAA Region 1 tournament at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl on Friday afternoon.

Lee-Scott advanced to the region championship game against the Springwood-Glenwood winner on Saturday, while Tuscaloosa Academy (15-8) will play the loser in the consolation game at 1:30 p.m. All four teams in action on Saturday will advance to the AISA Elite Eight on Thursday at the Multiplex.

“I thought we held as good as we could,” TA coach Barry Sanderson said. “We don’t have a ton of scorers out there. I thought we defended, that’s what kept us in the game. Give them credit. They hit a stretch there where they took the ball inside-out and knocked down 3’s. That’s what good shooting teams do.”

The Knights started out slow, but crawled back into the game with a strong second-half performance, finally gaining the lead at 30-29 on a layup by Hadrian Meneil, who had 16 of his 17 points in the second half. The Warriors scored the game’s next four points, then pulled away early in the fourth quarter as Sam Aldridge hit a pair of 3’s, followed by another by Buck Dean and a fourth by Hayes Ward in six possessions for an 11-point lead three minutes into the final quarter.

TA will be either the third or fourth seed in next week’s Elite Eight – depending on the outcome of Saturday’s game – and Sanderson hopes to have Jamarcus Darien, who was averaging 22 points a game before breaking his foot and sitting out nine games.

“If he is (able to play), then that gives us a big lift; if he isn’t, they’re still going to play the tournament anyway and we’ll do the best that we can,” Sanderson said. “But obviously Jamarcus is a big key to what we do.” Jacob Carson led Lee-Scott with 17 points, followed by Aldridge with 15.

 

Updated at 10:22 January 24, 2018

Trinity shocks 4A rival Catholic

By TIM GAYLE

It took Luke Hufham a little while to find his shooting touch, but his hot left hand in the third quarter proved to be the difference in Trinity’s 59-41 win over Catholic in the Catholic gym on Tuesday night.

Hufham, sidelined almost a month with a broken right thumb, missed six of his first seven shots as he struggled to shoot left handed, but hit six of nine shots in a decisive third quarter that gave the Wildcats some breathing room.

“He can’t shoot it right handed hardly at

Catholic’s D.J. Carter (2) tries to get past Trinity’s Jack Yohn in second half action Tuesday night (Photo: Tim Gayle)

all,” Trinity coach Jack Schweers said. “Each game, I think, (he’s shown improvement). It was a disaster against Montgomery Academy, better against Altamont and then tonight. You can see what he means to us had he not broken that hand. He is a force.”

Hufham scored 15 points in the second half to finish with a game-high 19 points, along with eight rebounds. He had more rebounds than points in the first half as he missed basket after basket from close range, trying to find the proper touch with his non-shooting hand.

“In the second half, he had 15 points,” Catholic coach Robb McGaughey pointed out. “He just hustles. Give the kid credit. It’s his senior year and he’s going after it.”

It was the first area loss for Catholic (15-6), which fell to 5-1 with area games remaining against St. James on Wednesday at home and at St. James next Tuesday. The regular season champion gets to host the area tournament on Feb. 6-10, with the fourth and fifth seeds playing each other, with the winner advancing to play the top seed in their gym.

The two teams that finish second and third will play one game, with the winner advancing to the championship game and assured of a playoff berth, making Trinity’s win on Tuesday crucial after losing to St. James and Catholic earlier this season.

“What we’re looking at, with five (area) teams, is nobody wants to be the four or five (seed),” Schweers said. “Catholic was 5-0, now they’re 5-1, and us, LAMP and St. James, two of us will get in the two-three (game).

“I thought our defensive effort was definitely the difference early on. Offensively, we had so many opportunities and missed easy shots. I thought our defense, the whole way, was solid.”

The Wildcats extended their one-point lead to nine by halftime with eight second-quarter points from Jack Yohn, who finished with 17. Trinity (10-5 overall, 3-2 in area play) led by as many as 19 as the lifeless Knights would make a 3-pointer on offense, only to give up a quick layup on the other end.

B.J. Barker had 10 points in the first half and finished with 18 to lead Catholic, but the Knights struggled to generate any offense for most of the game and were never in sync on defense.

“I tried everything tonight,” McGaughey said. “Every motivational tactic, every strategy. You just have to give Trinity credit. I guess they wanted it more than our kids. Really, that’s what it came down to. They outhustled us, they outplayed us.”

Updated at 10:01 am January 24, 2018

Montevallo defeated MA 59-51 with a 24 point fourth quarter. Senior guards Daqwan Bryant and Jemarcus Green led the Bulldogs with 16 and 15 points respectively. The Eagles, now 11-13, were led by sophomore guards William Norrell and Ollie Bear who scored 16 points each. Ollie Lester tallied 10 points and Trey Lindsey scored 7 points.

ACA clobbered Elmore County 71-44 at home. Ford Hilyer led the Eagles with 21 points. Grayson Evans added 15 points and Reece Solar chipped in a dozen points.

Southside Selma upset PCA 62-43. Ben Segars led the Panthers with 23 points and 6 rebounds as PCA fell to 19-4 on the season.  Michael McCarty added 11 points.

Macon East Academy smashed Lowndes Academy 66-28. Kyle Edwards had 16 points and 10 assists. Logan Goree had 15 points and 10 rebounds to lead Macon East to an easy area victory in a game postponed from last week. Mike Murry added 12 points for the Knights, which wrapped up the top area seed for the upcoming region tournament this weekend at Macon East.

Updated at 2:32 pm on January 21, 2018

Trinity’s Jack Schweers collects 400th coaching win as Wildcats defeat Altamont

Trinity coach Jack Schweers celebrates 400th coaching win with players and fellow coaches on Saturday January 20, 2018.
(Photo: Special to the Indy)

After 3 straight losses to rivals Catholic, St. James (OT) and MA on Friday night, Trinity got back in the win column with a victory over Altamont of Birmingham 66-37. The Wildcats got their leading scorer and rebounder Luke Hufham back-he has been out since early December with a broken thumb that required surgery. Still playing with a brace and shooting mostly left handed, Hufham had 13 points, 10 rebounds and was 1-1 from the free throw line left handed. Charlie Lott had 15 and Jack Yohn had 11 points.   The Wildcats are now 9-5 this season.

 

Updated at 11:54 on January 20, 2018

MA defeated Trinity Friday night 53-47 after jumping out to a big halftime lead. Ollie Lester was hot for the Eagles in the first half and scored 9 of his 10 points in the first two periods. Travis Thompson assured the Eagles of the big early lead by draining a pair of three pointers before halftime. After being scoreless in the first halftime Trey Lindsey came back in the second half to score all 13 of his points. At one time MA led 47-27 but the Wildcats came roaring back. Inspired by the return of Luke Hufham, who scored 9 points playing left handed, the

The always dangerous Charlie Lott led Trinity, along with Jack Yohn, with 15 points. (Photo: Bryan Hubbard) effective

Wildcats eventually gave the Eagles all they wanted narrowing the lead to 3 points with less than a minute remaining. William Norrell hit both sides of a one and one to put the game out of reach for MA. Charlie Lott and Jack Yohn led the ‘Cats with 15 points each.

Evangel Christian made short work of its arch rival East Memorial Christian 80-55 Thursday night, and with the victory the Lions establish themselves to beat in the state for AISA Class A. Daryl Stewart scored a game high 20 points with 3 assists and 4 steals. Chester Pruitt had 14 points, 6 assists and 9 rebounds. Jalen Shine tallied 10 points, 7 assists and 6 rebounds while Kory Gaines chipped in 10 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists. The Lions win place them at 18-4 and they finish as area champions and will be the top seed in the region tournament.

Prattville Christian demolished Montevallo 74-41 Friday night to captured its 18 th straight win.  Elijah Jones led the Panthers with 23 points and 16 rebounds as PCA improved to 19-3 on the season.  Cooper Meadows added 19 points and Ben Segars had 16 points.  Freshman Jacob Comer also scored 8 points.

Updated at 12:44 am on January 17, 2018

MA defeated ACA 58-50 with Ollie Bear having a big game scoring 25 points. Trey Lindsey scored 12 points and Ollie Lester chipped in with 7 points. For ACA, Grayson Evans led with 19 points and Ford Hilyer tallied 13 points. MA now stands at 9-12.

MA defeated Luverne High School 44-35 in the MLK Classic. William Norrell led MA with 16 points. Trey Lindsey added 9 points. Nate Meacham had 8 points and 9 rebounds.

Prattville Christian extended its win streak to 17 games with a narrow victory over   Ellwood Christian 55-54. Cooper Meadows led the number 4 ranked Panthers in Class 3A over the number 4 ranked team in Class 1A.  Meadows had 20 points and 5 rebounds. PCA improved to 18-3 on the season. BJ Comer added 14 points and 6 rebounds. Ben Segars also added 14 points and 5 rebounds.

 

Updated at 7:59 pm on January 13, 2018

PCA’s Cooper Meadows (24 white jersey) blocks a shot by Catholic’s Landon Pritchett in the first quarter. (Photo: Art Parker)

Prattville Christian game back in the last minute to get a win over Catholic 42-39 after forfeiting a big leads for most of the game. Cooper Meadows led the Panthers with 13 points and 7 rebounds as PCA improved to 17-3 on the season.  Ben Segars added 12 points and 5 rebounds; Elijah Jones added 10 points and 5 rebounds; BJ Comer had 7 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists. With less

Catholic’s B.J. Barker (3) collides with a pair of PCA players after getting off a shot.
(Photo: Art Parker)

 

than a minute to play, Comer made the play of the game with a bucket and a subsequent free throw to give the lead to the Panthers for good. For Catholic B.J. Barker had 20 points and Charlie Ryan had 9 rebounds. Catholic drops to 15-5.

Montgomery Academy defeated Elmore County on Saturday afternoon 63-53. Trey Lindsey led the MA attack with 23 points while Nate Meacham added 14 points. Ollie Bear added a dozen points for the Eagles. Donavan Jones and Kawn Bickley led Elmore County with 16 points each.

Updated at 5:04 am on January 13, 2018

Catholic slipped past LAMP 52-49 at home last Friday night to win a key area matchup after being down by 11 points in the third quarter. Charlie Ryan led the Knights with 13 points. B.J. Barker and D.J. Carter scored a dozen points each.

Prattville Christian Academy defeated Montgomery Academy 40-31 Friday night in area competition. Cooper Meadows led the Panthers with 17 points and 13 rebounds as PCA improved to 16-3 on the season and 3-0 in area play.  Elijah Jones added 8 points

Ollie Bear led MA with 11 points against PCA (File photo)

and 16 rebounds.  MA made a comeback late in the game and pulled to within three points at 34-31, but failed to make much needed shots. Ben Segars and B.J. Comer scored 8 and 7 points respectively. For MA, Ollie Bear tallied 11 points and William Norrell had 9 points. MA is 6-11 for the season.

Evangel Christian easily defeated Chambers Academy Friday night 55-28. Chester Pruitt scored 10 points to lead Evangel to the area win over Chambers. Aaron Alpert had 10 points. The Lions are 17-4.

Updated at 11:49 am on January 10, 2018

Montgomery Academy slipped past Montevallo 42-40 Tuesday for an area win. Trey Lindsey led the Eagles with 13 points. Ollie Bear had a dozen points and    Ollie Lester chipped in 10 points. Nate Meacham had a big night rebounding for the Eagles. MA is 6-10 on the season.

Prattville Christian clobbered Southside Selma 75-36 Tuesday. Ben Segars led the Panthers with 18 points and PCA improved to 15-3.  BJ Comer added 17 points and 7 assists and Cooper Meadows also scored 17 points.  Elijah Jones had 11 points and 7 rebounds.

Trinity secured its second win of the season against Tallassee on Tuesday 57-51. The ‘Cats won in a way they have rarely or ever done in the 24 years that Coach Jack Schweers has guided them-they won from the free throw line. Very few Wildcat teams during that span would be called good free throw shooting teams, but Trinity was 29 for 38 from the charity stripe, but even more amazingly, they were 17 for 20 in the fourth quarter when the outcome was on the line. From the line Jack Yohn was 6-6, Charlie Lott 8-10 and Grant Sanderson was 9-11. Yohn lead the Cats with 16, Lott and Sanderson had 14 each. The Wildcats go to 8-3 on the season.

Catholic whipped Wetumpka Tuesday 50-37. B.J

Catholic’s Garrett Cook continues to play well for the Knights and scored 11 points against Wetumpka (Photo: Art Parker)

. Barker led the Knights with 22 points. Garrett Cook scored 11 points and Charlie Ryan had 10 rebounds. Catholic is now 14-4 on the season.

In a rematch of last year’s AISA Class A state championship game, the Evangel Christian Academy (ECA) defeated East Memorial Christian Academy (EMCA) 66-60. Chester Pruitt

EMCA’s Lee Crawford goes in for an easy layup as Evangel’s Chester Pruitt tries to get back to defends. (Photo: Art Parker)

scored a game high 19 points with 8 assists and 5 rebounds for ECA. Jalen Shine had 15 points, 6 assists and 7 rebounds while DeSean Powell chipped in 12 points and 7 rebounds. The Lions are 16-4.

ACA got a big area win Tuesday as the Eagles defeated Elmore County 42-36 omn the road. Colby Rives led 12 with points and Grayson Evans added 11 points.

JV BOYS

Southside Selma defeated Prattville Christian 50-24. Jake Bius led the Panthers with 9 points as PCA falls to 5-7 on the season.

 

Updated at 8:58 am on January 7, 2018

Catholic started fast and held a comfortable margin throughout to defeat MA Saturday afternoon and eased to a 51-39 victory. The Knights dominated the boards and allowed the Eagles only 20 points in the first three periods. B.J. Barker led the Knights

Catholic’s Charlie Ryan (50) gets ready to muscle his way to another rebound in the first half. (Photo: Art Parker)

with 16 points. Garrett Cook had 11 points while Charlie Ryan had 10 points and collected 13 rebounds. Joseph Bear led MA with 14 points. Nate Meacham and Trey Lindsey scored 9 and 7 points respectively.

Catholic now stands at 13-4 for the season.

Full report in the January 11, 2017 printed edition of The Montgomery Independent.

 

Montgomery Academy slipped past ACA in a CCC thriller last Friday night 46-45. MA surrendered an early lead when ACA made a determined comeback in the fourth quarter. Ollie Bear hit a 3-pointer with a minute to play to get MA back to within a point. ACA coughed up the ball and with 18 seconds remaining Trey Lindsey hit a shot from the top of the key to give MA the slightest of victories. Lindsey and Bear scored 11 points each to lead MA, Ollie Lester added 9 points and William Robertson scored 8 points. For ACA senior Grayson Evans tallied 14 points. Reece Solar added 11 points and Jalen Clark contributed 10 points.

Prattville Christian demolished Autaugaville on Friday 54-22 with Cooper Meadows and Elijah Jones leading the Panthers with double doubles.  Meadows had 15 points and 13 rebounds and Jones addind 12 points and 10 rebounds, including 3 dunks.  Ben Segars led in scoring with 17 as PCA improved to 14-3 on the season.  BJ Comer added 7 assists and 7 steals.

Evangel Christian clobbered Eastwood Christian 70-34 Friday. Kory Gaines scored 16 points and seven rebounds and Jalen Shine added 16 points and eight rebounds to lead Evangel for the win over Eastwood. Daryl Stewart had 15 points, four assists and four steals. The Lions improve to 15-4.

Catholic defeated Trinity last Friday night 55-46. B.J. Barker led the Knights with 23 points. D.J. Carter had 13 points and Garrett Cook added 10 points to go along with his 16 rebounds.

Evangel easily defeated Abbeville Christian 68-45 in the Lakeside Tournament. Chester Pruitt had 24 points and five assists for the Lions, who captured third place. DeSean Powell added 11 points and six rebounds and Jaden Gardner chipped in six points and 10 rebounds. Pruitt was selected to the All-Tournament team. The Lions are now 13-4.

Macon-East slipped past Evangel in the semi-final of the Lakeside Tournament. Chester Pruitt scored 13 points for Evangel

Evangel Christian whipped Chambers Academy 64-22 in the Lakeside Tournament. Aaron Alpert scored 10 points to lead the Lions. Ronald Holland and DeSean Powell both chipped in nine points each. The Lions (14-4) will host Eastwood on Friday.

Catholic smashed BTW 58-29. Garrett Cook led the Knights with 15 points and B.J. Barker tallied 11 points. Catholic stands at 11-4 before facing area rival Trinity.

Evangel clobbered Hooper Academy 60-36. Chester Pruitt had 18 points and five assists to help Evangel get the win over Hooper in the first game of the Lakeside Tournament. Kory Gaines added 10 points and six rebounds and Jalen Shine chipped in nine points and six steals.

JV BOYS

Autaugaville defeated Prattville Christian 30-21, Tyler Hughes led the Panthers with 9 points and Stillman Davis added 7 points and 5 rebounds as PCA fell to 5-6 on the season.

 

Updated at 9:31 pm on December 29, 2017

PCA easily defeats Trinity to win CCC title

Prattville Christian Academy (PCA) defeated Trinity 67-48 to win the championship game of the Capital City Classic. The victory was the 12th straight win for the Panthers and they currently stand at 13-3 for the season.

The PCA Varsity boys team. CCC Champs. (Photo: Art Parker)

“This was a big win for us. You know, we lost in the championship game the last two years and it left a bad taste in our mouth. Our guys came prepared and they wanted to win really bad,” PCA coach Jason Roberson said. Roberson played for Trinity coach Jack Schweers in high school and was the tournament MVP in 1995.

Elijah Jones led PCA with 16 points. Tournament MVP Cooper Meadows collected 15 points and B.J. Comer scored 12 points.

Trinity was led by Jack Yohn 21 points and Charlie Lott scored 13 points.

Full report to be published in the January 4th printed edition of the Montgomery Independent.

Capital City Classic Final Scores Final

PCA def. Trinity 69-48 to win the Championship

Saint James def. Jackson 52-39

Ellwood def. MA 68-57

Tallassee def. ACA 53-51

Updated at 10:25 am on December 29, 2017

Capital City Classic Final Scores Second Round

Trinity def. Montgomery Academy 64-58

PCA def. Ellwood 48-43

Saint James def. ACA 61-45

Jackson def. Tallassee 53-38

Notes on PCA and Trinity Semi Final victories

The Trinity Wildcats built what looked like insurmountable leads in the first and second halves but Montgomery Academy did not go quietly and the stage was set for another thrilling finish between very old rivals. The Wildcats prevailed 64-58. Trinity senior Jack Yohn poured in 20 points and teammate Chase Lee was not far behind with 19 points, and Charlie Lott, always a pest to opponents, scored 16 points. Grant Sanderson and Parker Hughes iced the game for the ‘Cats with late free throws. Trey Lindsey led the Eagles with 18 points after spending unexpected time on the bench with foul trouble. Ollie Lester had 16 points for the Eagles while William Norrell and Nate Meacham contributed 10 points each.

Prattville Christian got past a stubborn Ellwood Christian squad 48-43 to advance to the championship game. Cooper Meadows led the Panthers with 22 points as PCA improved to 12-3 on the season. The Panthers will play in the CCC Tournament Championship game for the third consecutive year and attempt to avenge their 44-42 overtime lost to Trinity in last year’s tourney. Elijah Jones added 10 points for PAC, Ben Segars had 9 points, and B.J. Comer scored 7 points with 5 assists.

Trinity faces Prattville Christian in the Championship at 5:00. It will be the Cats 15th Championship game appearance, having won 8 of those contests. PCA coach Jason Roberson was the Tournament MVP in 1995 while playing for Trinity coach Jack Schweers.

PCA will face Trinity in the Championship game Friday at 5:00 at Trinity.

 

Upated at 9:02 pm on December 27, 2017

Capital City Classic

Final Scores Round One

MA’s Trey Lindsey drives into the lane to put up a short jumper for a pair of his 20 points. (Photo: Art Parker)

Ellwood Christian def. Jackson 64-61

Prattville Christian def. Tallassee 74-34

Trinity def. ACA 70-44

Montgomery Academy def. Saint James 53-44

Notes – Boys

Trinity’s Charlie Lott spins and twists to get a shot away against ACA. (Photo: Art Parker)

Prattville Christian 74, Tallassee 34

B.J. Comer led the Panthers with 20 points as PCA improves to 11-3 on the season. Cooper Meadows added 17 points and Ben Segars scored 16 points.

MA 53, Saint James 44

MA’s William Robertson (white jersey) attempts to block a shot by Saint James’ Ryan Roche (Photo: Art Parker)

Trey Lindsey had a dominating performance and scored 20 points to lead the Eagles. Travis Thompson was successful five times behind the arc and poured in 15 for MA. Ollie Lester added 7 points for the Eagles.  Damien Madison led the Trojans with 18 points and Andrew Sadie added 9 points.

Updated at 9:26 pm on December 22, 2017

Catholic whipped Autaugaville 50-22 in the Larry Chapman Tournament Friday. The Knights outscored Autaugaville 20-3 in the third quarter. D. J. Carter led the Knights with 15 points as Catholic improved to 9-2.

Updated at 8:59 pm on December 21, 2017

Catholic defeated Ellwood Christian in the Larry Chapman Tournament 51-44 Thurs

Catholic’s Charlie Ryan (white Jersey #50) anticipates an offensive rebound in the fourth quarter against Ellwood. (Photo: Art Parker)

day night after trailing 26-21 at halftime. The Knights held Ellwood to only 3 points in the third quarter. “We came out slow and were not putting

Catholic’s D.J. Carter (white Jersey #2) waits for his shot to drop as teammate Garrett Cook moves in for a potential rebound. (Photo: Art Parker)

forth the effort we need. I told the guys at halftime to quit playing around and get the job done,”

Catholic coach Robb McGaughey said. “They came out and did what they were supposed to do.” Catholic was out rebounded significantly in the first half but controlled the boards in the second half.

Garrett Cook led the Knights with another splendid performance pouring in 21 points and collected a dozen rebounds. D.J. Carter tallied 14 points. Charlie Ryan scored 7 points and had 9 rebounds. Justin Buford led Ellwood Christian with 19 points.

Catholic now stands at 8-2.

An additional report in the December 28, 2017 edition of The Montgomery Independent

Montgomery Academy defeated Autaugaville in the Larry Chapman Tournament 47-32. William Norrell 21 points with a trio of 3-pointers.

MA’s Nate Meacham (white jersey #11) leaps to get a rebound after an Autaugaville attempt. (Photo: Art Parker)

Trey Lindsey had 18 points with 4 3-pointers. William Robertson and Nate Meacham had 8 rebounds each. The Eagles improve to 3-6. Keon Steele led Autaugaville with 13 points.

An additional report in the December 28, 2017 edition of The Montgomery Independent

ACA dropped the Championship game of the Buffalo Wild Wings Challenge to Appalachian 51-50. Ford Hilyer paced ACA with points. ACA is now 2-10 for the season. Prior to the Appalachian game ACA defeated Winston County 65-28. Hilyer led ACA with 19 points. Braxton Alford and Jalen Clark had 11 points each.

Updated at 8:32 pm on December 20, 2017

MA defeated Brookwood 40-28 on Wednesday to improve to 2-6 for the season. Senior Ollie Lester led the Eagles with 15 points and William Robertson added 10 points. Trey Lindsey collected 9 assists. The Eagles hit of 8-11 free throws.

Catholic got past Greenville in a hard fought game Wednesday 55-52 in overtime. Garrett Cook put in an extraordinary effort with 24 points and 10 rebounds for the Knights while B.J. Barker poured in 16 points. The Knights are now 7-2 for the season.

Updated at 9:56 am on December 20, 2017

LAMP bounced back from an area loss and defeated ACA last Monday 67-57. Micah Boone led LAMP with 22 points and Quinn Sloane added 19 points. Winless ACA was led by Grayson Evans with 24 points and Reece Solar with 13 points.

PCA whipped MA 56-43 last week with B.J. Comer leading the Panthers with 23 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 steals as PCA improved to 9-3 on the season and 1-0 in area play.  Elijah Jones added 14 points and 13 rebounds and Cooper Meadows scored 12 points. For Montgomery academy William Norrell had 10 points, Nate Meacham and Trey Lindsey had 8 points each. Ollie Lester scored 7 points and Oliver Bear had 6 points.

MA defeated Altamont for its first win of the season 41-40 in overtime. Trey Lindsey led the Eagles 14 points and hot the game winner in overtime from 3-poimnt range. Nate Meacham added 11 points and  Ollie Bear added in 10 points.

Prattville Christian clobbered Autaugaville 78-52 Tuesday night with Cooper Meadows leading the Panthers with 31 points, 12 rebounds, including 3 dunks on the night.  Elijah Jones added 17 points and 13 rebounds.  Ben Segars added 12 points and BJ Comer had 10 points, 6 rebounds, 5 steals, and 4 assists as PCA improves to 10-3 on the season.

JV BOYS

PCA slipped by MA 36-32 last week. Caleb Florea and Tyler Hughes led the Panthers with 9 points each. Stillman Davis and Jackson Holley added 8 points each and Davis also grabbed 11 rebounds. PCA improved to 4-4 on the season. Britton Kohn led the Eagles with 11 points, 5 steals and 6 assists. Jack Cleary notched 7 points, 8 rebounds and 3 steals. MA stands at 2-3.

PCA defeated Autaugaville 25-13 Tuesday night with Jacob Comer leading the Panthers with 10 points and 6 steals. Stillman Davis added 4 points and 8 rebounds as PCA improved to 5-4 on the season

Updated at 11:44 on December 16, 2017

Catholic easily defeated BTW Magnet Friday night 61-28 with the outcome never in doubt. D.J. Carter and B.J. Barker led the attack for the Knights with 13 points and Garrett Cook added 12 points. Catholic took a 22-5 lead at the end of the first quarter and never looked back.

Catholic’s B.J. Barker leaps high attempting to block a BTW shot in the first quarter of Friday night’s game. (Photo: Art Parker)

After a 40-20 halftime lead the Knights prohibited BTW from scoring in the first 4 1/2 minutes of the third quarter. Many of Catholic’s younger players played quite a few minutes in the fourth quarter. “I like the way we came out quick tonight and played aggressively. We got a big lead and maintained it throughout,” Catholic coach Robb McGaughey said. The Knights are now at 5-2 for the season.

Trinity defeated LAMP 69-52 in an early season showdown between two Top 20 Area rivals Friday night. The Wildcats defense was chilling to LAMP’s offense as and the Wildcats pressure held LAMP to just 3 field goals in the game’s first 10 minutes, allowing the Cats to build an 18-6 lead that established their control for the rest of the game. Trinity lead 29-18 at the half but really exploded late in the third quarter when they built a 61-35 lead that carried into the 4th quarter.  The Tigers were able to close that spread in a battle of reserves.

Trinity’s Luke Hufham does a reverse slam in the victory over LAMP (Photo: Eddie Olszewski)

Trinity Coach Jack Schweers said “I think the first half was our best stretch of defense this year. We turned the ball over too much, which is what got us in trouble in our only loss. Luke Hufham had his sixth Double-Double in six games this year, this time getting 19 and 12. Jack Yohn also had a Double-Double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Chase Lee contributed 11 points. Jeffrey Owens ended up with 14 points to lead LAMP. Trinity is 5-1 going into the Christmas break. The Wildcats will host the 23rd Annual CCC Christmas Tournament, starting Wednesday, December 27th.

Trinity is the Defending Champions, The Wildcats have won the Tournament 8 times

Evangel Christian pummeled Morgan Academy 64-38 Friday night. Daryl Stewart scored 12 points to lead Evangel to the win over Morgan. Chester Pruitt added 11 points and Solomon Ayeni finished with nine points. The Lions (10-2) will play Success Unlimited next Saturday in the Larry Chapman tournament at AUM.

Prattville Christian whipped Prattville 75-65 Friday night. BJ Comer led the Panthers with 27 points and 11 rebounds and also had 5 steals.  Cooper Meadows added 13 points and 16 rebounds and Ben Segars scored 16 points as PCA improved to 7-3 on the season.

Updated at 9:26 on December 10, 2017

Catholic defeated Montgomery Academy 58-45 and hit ten (10) 3-point shots in the game with all but one of those coming in the first half, which led to the Knights large 34-18 lead at intermission. The Eagles came back and outscored the Knights in the third period drawing much closer, but it wasn’t enough and Catholic notched another victory. MA was led by Trey Lindsey and Ollie Bear with 15 points each. For Catholic, freshman Jalen Thomas led with 14 points and B.J. Barker tallied a dozen points. D.J. Carter and Garrett Cook scored 10 points each. Catholic improved to 4-2 with the win.

Prattville Christian got past Ellwood Christian 57-50 Saturday. B.J. Comer led PCA with 23 points and 8 rebounds. Cooper Meadows added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Ben Segars added 13 points. Elijah Jones grabbed 11 rebounds as PCA improved to 6-3 on the season.

Updated at 10:41 am on December 6, 2017

The Trinity Wildcats were unforgiving in a 53 point devastation of a young and inexperienced BTW squad, 73-20 Tuesday night. The Cats got out to a 42-10 halftime lead as high rising senior Luke Hufham scored 19 of his game high 23 points in the 1st half alone.  Charlie Lott provided the outside shooting and contributed 19. Jack Yohn had his usual workmanlike performance as he scored 12 points and chipped in with another solid defensive effort. Grant Sanderson was a welcome return from the flu.  Unfortunately, sophomore Will Aaron was lost for the season with a freak fractured leg suffered Friday night. The good news was senior Thomas Helms was impressive in his first meaningful minutes after recovering from ACL surgery. Trinity goes to 4-1, 1-0 in the Area. It was BTW’s first game of the year. Trinity will host 1A powerhouse Ellwood Christian of Selma on Friday night.

Dadeville defeated Alabama Christian Tuesday night 75-55. For ACA Jalen Clark led with 15 points and Grayson Evans also tallied 15 points.

Prattville Christian walloped Wetumpka 60-40 Tuesday night. Elijah Jones led the Panthers with 13 points and 11 rebounds.  Ben Segars added 15 points and BJ Comer scored 13 points as PCA improves to 5-3 on the season.

Prattville defeated MA 58-46 Tuesday night. The Lions improved their record to 4-4. Quan Johnson led Prattville with 16 points and Jaylen McCary chipped in 14 to lead the Lions. Trey Lindsey scored 19 points and Nate Meacham added 13 points to lead the Eagles in scoring. MA drops to 0-3 on the season.

Catholic slipped past LAMP Tuesday night 58-50. BJ Barker 19 points. Garrett Cook 19 points 14 rebounds. The Knights are 3-2 on season.

Updated at 12:42 on December 1, 2017

Varsity Boys

Prattville Christian got past Trinity in a thriller Friday night 60-59. Michael McCarty led the Panthers with 19 points and 6 steals while Ben Segars added 18 points. PCA improved to 4-3 on the season.

Montgomery Catholic whipped ACA 48-39 Friday night. B.J. Barker led the Knights with 16 points and Landon Pritchett added 10 points.

JV Boys

Montgomery Academy slipped past LAMP in JV Boys hoops Thursday night at MA   35-34. Jack Cleary made a layup with 6 seconds remaining to give the Eagles the lead. Jennings Lawson had 13 points and Cleary had 6 points.

Trinity defeated PCA 53-26 Friday night. Stillman Davis led the Panthers with 12 points as PCA falls to 1-2 on the season.

Updated at 9:54 pm on November 30, 2017

LAMP survived an early battle with Montgomery Academy and went on to win 78-64 Thursday night. Jeffrey Owens led LA

MA’s Trey Lindsey launches a successful 3 point shot in the first half against LAMP (Photo: Trey Lindsey)

MP with 28 points. Quinn Sloan added 22 points and Micah Boone tallied 12 points in the victory. LAMP was impressive at the charity stripe sinking 20 of 24 free throws. MA was led by Ollie Lester with 19 points followed by Trey Lindsey with 16 points, William Norrell added another dozen for the Eagles. LAMP is now 6-1 for the season and MA is 0-1.

Evangel Christian easily disposed of Edgewood Academy Thursday night 61-34. Kory Gaines scored 19 points and gather 10 rebounds to lead Evangel. Daryl Stewart added 17 points, 6 steals and 4 assists. Chester Pruitt chipped in 13 points, 7 steals and 7 assists. The Lions are 8-1 on the season .

Updated at 8:38 am on November 29, 2017

Evangel Christian walloped Crenshaw Christian Tuesday night 70-32 in AISA Class A action. Daryl Stewart and Jalen Shine each scored 11 points to lead Evangel to the win over Crenshaw. Joseph Love added 10 points. Preston Owens finished with 14 points for the Cougars. The Lions are now 7-1 and will host Edgewood on Thursday.

Prattville Christian easily defeated Alabama Christian 73-58 Tuesday night. Elijah Jones led the Panthers with 15 points and 26 rebounds. BJ Comer and Ben Segars each added 18 points and Cooper Meadows had 13 points as PCA improves to 3-3 on the season. For Alabama Christian Ford Hilyer led the Eagles with 26 points, Colby Rives added 11 points and Jalen Clark tallied 10 points.

Updated at 2:42 pm on November 28, 2017

Evangel Christian defeated Autauga Academy 48-41 Monday night. Chester Pruitt and Daryl Stewart both scored 12 points to lead the Lions over the Generals. Ethan Johnson added 11 points. The Lions (6-1) will host Crenshaw Christian next.

Updated at 11:39 am on November 22, 2017

Bullock County overcame a one point halftime deficit to defeat Montgomery Catholic 60-50 and take the

Catholic’s Garrett Cook (white jersey) leaps high to block a Bullock County shot in the first half. (Photo: Art Parker)

championship of the Knights of Columbus Tournament. Keeson Boarders led Bullock with 15 points and Kavaris Shelly added 11 more points. Catholic, missing quite a few players due to a prolonged football season, was paced by B.J. Barker with 18 points. Garrett Cook scored 13 and Landon Pritchett added another 7 points. The Knights now stand at 1-1 for the season.

“I liked the effort by our guys tonight, we just came up a little short. We are playing a lot of younger players due to football season but they are getting valuable experience at the varsity level. In the next couple of days we will have six players join us that haven’t practiced because of football. That’s when we will start to put things together,” Catholic coach Rob McGaughey.

Prattville Christian Academy (PCA) defeated Dallas County 67-46 in the final round of the Capstone Classic at Shelton State. Ben Segars led the Panthers with 24 points. which he scored all in the second half as PCA improved to 2-3 on the season.  Cooper Meadows added 17 points, BJ Comer had 13 points, and Elijah Jones scored 11 points.  PCA will travel to Alabama Christian (ACA) on Tuesday.

Updated at 4:55 am on November 22, 2017

PCA went down to defeat for the second time in the Capstone Classic at Shelton State Community College. Hillcrest of Tuscaloosa bested the Panthers 70-63. Ben Segars led the Panthers with 27 points. Cooper Meadows added 14 points and B.J. Comer had 13 points as PCA falls to 1-3 on the season.

Catholic whipped Marbury 68-52 in the opening round of The Knights of Columbus Tournament at Montgomery Catholic High School on Monday. B.J. Barker led the Knights with 27 points and a half dozen assists. Garrett Cook poured in 18 points and collected 15 rebounds. Catholic (1-0) will face Bullock County in the tournament championship round Tuesday afternoon.

Prattville Christian (PCA) embarrassed Westminster-Oak Mountain 67-23 to earn its first win of the season. Cooper Meadows led the Panthers with 24 points.  B.J. Comer added 10 points and Ben Segars grabbed 10 rebounds. PCA will play next in the Capstone Classic at Shelton State in Tuscaloosa.

Updated at 12:44 pm on November 16, 2017

Trinity opens season with consecutive victories

The first 8 minutes of the Trinity Wildcats’ 2017-2018 season had the Cats looking a lot like the Golden State Warriors, as they scored 28 points in the first quarter and eventually won 61-55.  The game got off to an explosive start as Luke Hufham had a thunderous dunk on the first possession and Jack Yohn, Charlie Lott and Walt Johnston followed with 3 pointers. Trinity lead 28-13 after one quarter and would push that margin to 20 before Tallassee, behind senior guard Travon Skipper, would settle down and find a solution to dealing with Trinitys full court pressure. Skipper scored 15 of his game high 17 points through the 3rd quarter, allowing Tallassee to climb all the way back, cutting Trinity’s lead to 48-45 going into the fourth quarter.  The Cats then went back to work, extending their lead to 56-45 where they would hold the visitors at bay until the final horn, and a 61-55 win. Junior guard Charlie Lott lead Trinity with 17 points, followed by Luke Hufham with 15, Jack Yohn With 12 and Grant Sanderson with 11.

 

Chase Lee scored a career high 29 points on five 3’s and 6-6 from the free throw line to lead the Trinity Wildcats to a satisfying 62-52 road win over Prattville Christian. The senior point guard confidently knocked down outside shots when PCA sagged to contain Trinity’s inside players Luke Hufham and Jack Yohn. The win in PCA’s gym may have been Trinity’s first there. No one could remember them having won there previously. Leaping Luke Hufham, the senior high riser had 18 points and 15 rebounds and Charlie Lott chipped in with 10. Michael Mc Carty led PCA with 14 points and Elijah Jones added 11. Trinity(2-0) will travel to Birmingham on Friday to play Altamont. PCA will host Westminster-Oak Mountain on Friday.

 

Evangel Christian 56, Springwood      31

Chester Pruitt scored 10 points to lead Evangel (3-0) in the season opener over Springwood. Kory Gaines and Jaden Gardner each chipped in eight points. Gus Davidson had 13 points for the Wildcats. The Lions will host Macon-East on Thursday, November 16.

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