Our area high school basketball teams are winding down the regular seasons and jockeying for positioning for region tournaments. The Statesboro Blue Devils took a pair of games on the road at Coffee County Tuesday night. Southeast Bulloch earned a split with the visiting Islands Sharks. Bulloch Academy split on the road at Pinewood with the girls winning and the boys losing, and Portal split at Montgomery County.
For the Southeast Bulloch boys it was a much needed win as they are now just one game out of fourth place after a 69-53 victory over the Sharks.
The Yellow Jackets grabbed a 20-17 halftime lead and then pulled away in the second half going on a 16-3 run in the third to get some distance. The run was sparked by a couple of alley oop passes from Davis O’Dowd to Collin Smith which brought the fans to their feet. Smith had 14 of his team-high 24 points in the third and decisive quarter.
“Collin and Ryon Reed have been our leaders since day one, and they both brought it tonight,” said SEB coach Tony Raymond. “I thought Brandon O’Dowd had a good game tonight and Brandon Wells always brings a spark when he comes in off the bench. It was an important region win and I thought we rose up and played well tonight as a team.”
Raymond subbed for his starters toward the end of the first quarter into the second and Islands promptly went on an 10-2 run and tied the game. In his first year as a head coach Raymond admits it there has been a learning process which he continues to work through.
“I feel we have some talented guys on the bench and I’d like to get more players involved,” said Raymond. “It didn’t work well tonight, and that is why you saw the starters in there for most of the rest of the game. I am hoping to get our program where we can go 10 players deep, but we are not there yet.”
Southeast Bulloch was led by Smith with 24 points, while Ryon Reed had 14 points and Brandon O’Dowd had 10 points. The Jackets improve to 6-13 overall and 2-5 in region play.
The Southeast Bulloch Lady Jackets hung tough for the first half, and much of the third quarter, before seeing Islands go on a 14-3 run and pull away in the fourth quarter as they dropped a 51-43 decision.
“We had our moments tonight, but you have to play a full game,” said coach Marci Cochran. “We play hard when we want to and if we want to win, we have to play hard for a full game which we definitely didn’t do tonight.”
The Jackets were coming off back-to-back wins against New Hampstead and Wayne County and Cochran was frustrated with Tuesday’s effort considering how well they played last week.
“I know what we are capable of,” said Cochran. “We just beat two pretty good teams and then to come out here with the lack of effort we showed was disappointing.”
The Jackets were led by Alex Odom with 15 points, while Ansleigh Littles added 11 points. Southeast Bulloch falls to 8-8 overall and 3-3 in region play. Up next the Jackets travel to Metter Saturday with the girl’s game starting at 4:30.
The Statesboro Blue Devils swept a pair of games at Coffee County Tuesday night with the girls winning 63-34 and the boys with a 59-53 victory. Allyssa Staten led the Lady Blue Devils with an impressive triple-double scoring 17 points with 20 rebounds and 10 blocked shots. Ashari Washington had 20 points and Reya Johnson had 12 points and 13 rebounds. Statesboro improves to 16-5 overall and 5-2 in region play.
The Statesboro boys avenged an earlier loss to the Trojans as they won 59-53. The boys were led by Leslie Black with 24 points and 16 rebounds. James Flagg had 12 points for the Blue Devils who improve to 13-5 overall and 5-2 in region play. Up next Statesboro hosts Swainsboro Saturday with the girls starting at 6:00.
The Bulloch Academy Gators split a pair of games at Pinewood Tuesday. The girls won 47-16 while the boys fell 68-52. The Lady Gators were led by Ashantay Noble with 12 points while Armani Cooke added 10 points. The Gators improve to 15-6 overall and 5-0 in region play. The Gator boys had a three-game win streak come to a close with their 68-52 loss. Up next BA will travel to St. Andrews Friday with the girl’s game starting at 6:00.
The No. 3 ranked Portal Panthers defeated Montgomery County Tuesday 74-45 to improve to 18-1 overall and 5-0 in region play. Portal was led by Amir Jackson with 27 points and Marion Tremble with 20 points. The Lady Panthers dropped a 68-21 decision to the Eagles and fall to 3-15 and 0-5. Up next Portal hosts ECI Friday at 6:00.