E.A. Sports Today

Feels like old times

Boys roundup: Saks attacks from the inside to beat Cleburne County

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By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

HEFLIN – For those who think the Saks basketball team is just a collection of outside shooters who rarely venture inside the arc, the Wildcats took it inside like old times Wednesday to show they still know how to do it.

The Wildcats admittedly have a more perimeter-oriented offense this season, but they scored only two 3-pointers in beating Cleburne County 67-36 for the Cleburne County Holiday Invitational boys title.

Instead, they eventually were able to weave through the Tigers’ zone for layups or baskets in tight quarters. The limited 3s weren’t for a lack of trying, but they didn’t get hit first one until Quen Williams finally broke through with 5:55 left in the third quarter. They didn’t get the other until the final two minutes of the game.

The Wildcats had 11 3-pointers against Central of Clay County in their semifinal victory less than 24 hours earlier.

“You do want to have other ways to score because you go cold sometimes from the 3-point line,” Saks coach Jonathan Miller said. “We didn’t necessarily have that game plan, but they were not going to let Quen get shots off uncontested and … that led to some buckets inside.”

The inside approach proved a boon to guys like Devin Harris and Monty Young. Harris regularly was able to position himself under the basket to clean up anything falling off the rim. Young was able to do some things that had been missing from his game for a while.

Young had a game-high 15 points. Harris finished with 10 – all in the first half — as did Makel Taylor. Williams, who went for 36 with nine 3s when the teams played here two weeks ago, finished with 12. Jacob Lee led Cleburne County with 14.

“I was making a bunch of stuff I used to make last year but this year I fell off a little bit,” Young said. “It lets you know you’ve still got it and you can still do those things. It shows I’m getting back into (basketball form).:

Randolph County 66, Central-Clay County 61 (2 OTs)

HEFLIN – Elijah McFarland scored 30 points and Andrew Prestridge scored five of his 25 in the second overtime to help Randolph County win the consolation game of the Cleburne County Holiday Invitational.

Prestridge opened the scoring in both overtime sessions with a 3-pointer. He made one of two free throws with 4.7 seconds left in the first overtime to extend the game. Clay’s Dontay Bell heaved a ball from midcourt, but the prayer went unanswered.

Bell tied the game at 47 with 8.4 seconds left in regulation. McFarland had a chance to win it in the closing seconds of regulation, but his 3-pointer hit the side of the rim and no one could control the rebound.

Davyn Flenord led Clay Central with 22 points.

BOYS BOX SCORES

Saks 67, Cleburne County 36

SAKS – Makel Taylor 5 0-0 10, Darion Coleman 3 1-1 7, Devin Harris 5 0-0 10, Quin Smith 0 1-2 1, Jaylin Britt 2 0-0 5, Davieunte Booker 0 2-2 2, Monty Young 6 3-5 15, Quen Williams 4 3-3 12, Quay McCord 0 0-0 0, Demetrius Powell 2 1-2 5. Totals 27 11-15 67.

CLEBURNE COUNTY – Noah Ware 1 1-3 3, Jacob Lee 5 4-5 14, Colton Austin 0 0-0 0, McCain Carlisle 0 0-0 0, Stashun Henson 3 0-0 7, Jeremiah Blake 2 0-0 6, Josh Brown 0 2-2 2, Jacob Camp 0 1-2 1, Will Morrow 0 0-0 0, Taylor Rice 1 1-2 3, John Robinson 0 0-0 0. Totals 12 9-14 36.

Saks 19 17 11 20 — 67
Cleburne Co. 13 6 12 5 — 36

3-point goals: Saks 2 (Williams, Britt); Cleburne Co. 3 (Henson, Blake 2). Total fouls: Saks 14, Cleburne County 12. Technical fouls: Morrow.

Randolph County 66, Central-Clay County 61 (2 OTs)

CENTRAL-CLAY COUNTY – Davyn Flenord 7 6-8 22, Sencer Loveless 1 0-0 2, Jaylen Lyles 4 0-0 8, J.T. Burns 1 0-0 2, D.J. Ford 0 0-0 0, Tyler Smith 0 0-0 0, JoJo Staples 4 0-0 8, Dustin Hardy 4 1-1 10, Dawson Taylor 2 5-10 9. Totals 23 12-19 61.

RANDOLPH COUNTY – Andrew Prestridge 9 4-6 25, Elijah McFarland 10 8-14 30, Levi Phillips 2 1-1 5, Braxton Lackey 0 3-4 3, J.R. Roundtree 0 0-0 0, Melvin Sims 0 0-1 0, Matthew Greene 1 1-2 3, Dontay Bell 0 0-0 0. Totals 22 17-28 66.

Central-Clay 11 13 14 9 10 4 — 61
Randolph Co. 8 14 10 15 10 9 — 66

3-point goals: Central-Clay 3 (Flenord 2, Hardy); Randolph Co. 5 (Prestridge 3, McFarland 2). Total fouls: Central-Clay 25, Randolph Co. 19. Fouled out: Roundtree.



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