E.A. Sports Today

Faith tested

UPDATED
Dynamic scorer Carlisle withdraws from Faith Christian after being declared ineligible, Lions could lose the wins they scored with him; includes roundup of other county games

Tuesday’s games
Anniston 70, White Plains 58
Cherokee County 86, Fort Payne 85
Faith Christian 53, JCA 51
Handley 67, Talladega 62
Jacksonville 59, Ranburne 43
Munford 64, Cleburne County 60 (OT)
Oxford 56, Vestavia Hills 50
Pleasant Valley 69, Wellborn 30
Sacred Heart 99, Gaston 12
Southside 51, Glencoe 37
Sylacauga 74, Lincoln 67
Weaver 94, Donoho 89
Winterboro 68, ASD 35

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

It’s been a tough week for the Faith Christian basketball team. First, the Lions lost their best scorer, then they might be in danger of losing all their wins from last season.

They almost lost a double-digit lead Tuesday night in an area game with Jacksonville Christian, too, but they forced a turnover in the closing seconds to hold onto a 53-51 victory.

Had they not held on it would have been yet another body blow to a program already reeling from a big one.

Earlier this week Lions sophomore guard Malcolm Carlisle withdrew from school after being declared ineligible for playing last season despite receiving tuition assistance following his transfer from Saks. According to AHSAA rules, players that receive such assistance transferring after their seventh-grade year are ineligible for a year at their new school.

Because Carlisle did not sit out last year per the tuition rule, the Lions also appear to be in danger of forfeiting the 10 victories they earned with him in the lineup (nine last year, Gaylesville this year), including a Calhoun County Tournament win over Pleasant Valley. (An offshoot of that potential ruling is Wellborn could be awarded a victory in its winless 2017-18 season).

Faith Christian head of school Chip Jones confirmed “we messed up with a rule so there are some consequences,” but declined to elaborate on those consequences, citing confidentiality concerns that go beyond a team’s won-loss record. He said the oversight was unintentional.

“We violated a guideline we should have known about,” Jones said.

The Lions received a letter from the AHSAA about the start of last season that stated Carlisle was in the clear, Lions coach Justin Kisor said – adding they didn’t play him until they received that confirmation – then received a letter last Wednesday informing them of the eligibility issue and the AHSAA’s ruling Friday.

“How are you going to send a letter telling me he’s clear to go and then all of sudden you get a letter that says oh by the way he’s ineligible last year?” Kisor said. “They should’ve said that last year.

“If they said that last year, we’d sit him. We’re not trying to do anything dirty. I’d put five people out there you have never seen a basketball before (before knowingly breach a rule). I’m trying to do things the right way.”

Carlisle was expected to enroll in another Calhoun County private school, rumored to be Sacred Heart, as early as today (Dec. 5), but that move has been delayed by other eligibility questions. If he did enroll there he would be ineligible to play basketball until at least December 2019.

He didn’t play in the Lions’ area loss to Donoho Friday and he wasn’t in the gym Tuesday night, although he did reportedly come by the school earlier to say is farewells.

The Lions faced even more adversity Tuesday night against JCA when the scorer expected to replace Carlisle, freshman Michael McGraw, rolled his ankle and missed the entire second quarter. McGraw scored 23 in the Donoho game, the first without Carlisle.

They held a 10-point lead in the game that shrunk to two with 10 seconds to play and they forced a turnover before the Thunder (6-2) could get off a potential tying or winning shot.

“It was a good learning experience for our guys and a huge win for us,” Kisor said. “We played hard; that’s what I look at, the effort. Guys stepped up who normally don’t step up. We’re up 10 to 13 points in the first half and our two big (remaining) scorers, Michael McGraw and C.J. Gomez, had two points at halftime.”

Chase Gibbons came off the bench and gave them 12 points. Seth Cravens was the Lions’ top scorer with 14.

Kobe Messer scored 17 points and grabbed nine rebounds for JCA. Nash Messer grabbed seven rebounds and Chase Vinson led all scorers with 18 points.

Oxford 56, Vestavia Hills 50

VESTAVIA HILLS – Oxford hit nine 3-pointers, learned to be patient with the lead (which they were not in the loss at White Plains) and Zondrick Garrett went 4-for-4 at the free throw line in the final 90 seconds to get back on the winning track. Eugene Leonard hit three of his five 3s and scored 13 of his game-high 21 points in the second quarter as the Yellow Jackets turned a four-point deficit into a six-point halftime lead. Mont McClendon scored all 13 of his points in the first half.

Oxford 56, Vestavia Hills 50
OXFORD – Rylan Houck 0 0-0 0, Zondrick Garrett 2 5-6 10, Eugene Leonard 8 0-2 21, Mont McClendon 5 0-1 13, Kobe Warren 2 0-0 4, Roc Taylor 2 2-2 6, Justin Moore 1 0-0 2, Trafton Mack 0 0-0 0. Totals 20 7-11 56.
VESTAVIA HILLS – Paul Hargrove 6 2-2 14, John Barranco 0 0-0 0, Davis Holbert 0 0-0 0, Thomas Anderson 1 0-0 2, Kevin Couch 5 0-0 13, Jackson Smith 0 0-2 0, Hollis McCoy 0-0 0, Michael Vice 8 2-3 19, Hunter Salmon 1 0-0 2. Totals 21 4-7 50.
Oxford 10 25 9 12 – 56
Vestavia Hills 14 15 11 10 – 50
3-point goals: Oxford 9 (Garrett, Leonard 5, McClendon 3); Vestavia Hills 4 (Couch 3, Vice). Total fouls: Oxford 14, Vestavia Hills 12.

Weaver 94, Donoho 89

DeAndre McCain and Amardric Elston both enjoyed 20-point nights and Shamar Spinks scored 13 of his 19 in the fourth quarter as the Bearcats rallied to beat the Falcons. Elston had 23 points and McCain had 22, with most of his scoring (13 points) coming in the first quarter.

Donoho placed four scorers in double figures. Jacob LeCroy led the way with 31 points, and didn’t get cranked up until the second quarter. Amari Smedley had 22 points, Rod Elston 16 and Seth Ford 15. The Falcons carried an 11-point lead into the fourth quarter. “We had them, we just didn’t follow the game plan all four quarters,” Falcons coach Jeremy Satcher said.

Weaver 94, Donoho 89
WEAVER – Taylor Deck 0 0-0 0, Brandon Heath 0 0-0 0, Robert Gaines 8 2-3 18, Gary Wallace 5 0-0 10, Shamar Spinks 7 5-6 19, Marcello D’Ambrosa 1 0-0 2, DeAndre McCain 6 6-7 22, Amardric Elston 10 3-4 23, Taber Stephens 0 0-0 0, Colby Thompson 0 0-1 0. Totals 37 16-20 94.
DONOHO – Seth Ford 5 2-2 15, Amari Smedley 7 6-12 22, Rod Elston 6 3-3 16, Reid Williamon 0 0-0 0, Jacob LeCroy 11 8-9 31, Charlie Williamon 2 1-2 5 4. Totals 31 20-28
Weaver 23 22 15 34 – 94
Donoho 19 32 20 18 – 89

3-point goals: Weaver 4 (McCain 4); Donoho 8 (Ford 3, Smedley 2, Elston, LeCroy, C. Williamon). Fouled out: Heath. Total fouls: Weaver 22, Donoho 15.

Pleasant Valley 69, Wellborn 30

JACKSONVILLE – Colby Gaines led a balanced PV scoring attack with 16 points. The Raiders got scoring from 11 of the 12 players who got in the game. Coleman Haynes scored all eight of his points and Josh Ballew had six of his nine in a 27-point PV third quarter.

Pleasant Valley 69, Wellborn 30
WELLBORN –
Khavion Wesley 3 7-10 14, Justin Berry 1 2-2 4, Lewis Patterson 1 1-4 3, Max Searcy 0 0-1 0, Tae Traylor 0 0-2 0, Rob Broom 3 0-0 8, Fred Taylor 0 0-0 0, Logan Grubbs 0 1-2 1. Totals 8 11-21 30.
PLEASANT VALLEY – Austin Johnson 1 1-2 3, Jake Malsy 2 0-1 4, Brayden Wright 2 5-7 9, Trent Finley 0 0-0 0, Josh Ballew 3 2-2 9, Brody Phillips 2 0-0 5, Wyatt Ingram 2 1-2 5, Coleman Haynes 3 1-2 8, Conner Wolfe 1 0-1 2, Garrett Crammer 1 1-2 3, Jackson Almaroad 3 1-3 7, Colby Gaines 6 2-3 14. Totals 26 14-25 69.
Wellborn                      9        11        5         5          –          30
Pleasant Valley           16      18     27        8          –          69

3-point goals: Wellborn 3 (Wesley, Broom 2); Pleasant Valley 3 (Ballew, Phillips, Haynes). Fouled out: Patterson, Traylor. Total fouls: Wellborn 20, Pleasant Valley 20. Officials: Calkins, Watson, Barker.

Jacksonville 59, Ranburne 43

RANBURNE – DeMarien Stewart hit 5 of 10 3-point attempts for all of his game-high 15 points, Donavon McCain grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds and the Golden Eagles came from behind with a big second half. The Golden Eagles trailed by three at halftime, then took the lead for good with a 26-point third quarter. Yessmen Green added 12 points for Jacksonville. Brock Young led Ranburne with 13.

Jacksonville 59, Ranburne 43
JACKSONVILLE –
DeMarien Stewart 5-10 0-0 15, Yessmen Green 5-10 1-2 12, Omarion Adams 4-5 0-0 9, Donavon McCain 3-7 0-0 6, Nathan Barnwell 3-4 0-0 6, Jay Davis 1-4 3-4 5, Kyrie Maynor 1-6 1-3 3, Hudson Harvey 1-1 0-0 2, Carter Landers 0-3 1-2 1, Jayden Barksdale 0-3 0-2 0, Luke Jackson 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 23-54 6-13 59.
RANBURNE – Brock Young 4-10 4-6 13, Devin Chanders 3-6 3-4 10, Jake Burson 3-9 2-2 9, Sammy Green 3-10 0-0 7, Jackson Pollard 0-1 2-2 2, Tye Bailey 1-1 0-0 2, Davison Bailey 0-0 0-0 0, Caleb Hornsby 0-0 0-0 0, Brett Maddox 0-0 0-0 0, Chase Wiggins 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 14-37 11-14 43.
Jacksonville    10        10        26        13        –          59
Ranburne        10        13        15        5         –          43

3-point goals: Jacksonville 7-22 (Stewart 5-10, Green 1-4, Adams 1-1, Davis 0-3, Maynor 0-3, Jackson 0-1); Ranburne 4-15 (Young 1-5, Chanders 1-2, Burson 1-3, Green 1-4, Pollard 0-1). Rebounds: Jacksonville 41 (McCain 11, Barnwell 8); Ranburne 18 (Green 6). Total fouls: Jacksonville 14, Ranburne 12.

Handley 67, Talladega 62

ROANOKE – Handley hit eight 3-pointers in the first half to open a 12-point halftime lead, but Talladega cut the margin to one with less than a minute left before a whistle under the basket killed its momentum. Kobe Simmons led Talladega with 16 points, while Rontvious Barclay had 16 points and nine rebounds, D’Corian Wilson had 14 points and Aaron Green had 11 points and seven steals. Handley’s Corey Bell led all scorers with 23 points.

Handley 67, Talladega 62
TALLADEGA (4-2) –
Nigel Scales 0 0-0 0, Chaztin Tanner 0 0-0 0, Jaquan Chatman 0 0-0 0, Aaron Green 5 1-3 11, Rontavious Barclay 8 0-0 16, D’Corian Wilson 7 0-1 14, J.Q. Wilson 1 2-4 4, Kobe Simmons 7 2-2 14, Brocker Simmons 0 0-0 0. Totals 28 5-10 62.
HANDLEY – Jackson Martin 5 2-5 13, Thomas McCray 1 1-2 3, Graham Martin 6 1-2 18, Davontae Houston 0 0-0 0, Armante Curtis 1 0-0 2, William Hodges 0 0-0 0, Jared Sears 1 0-0 2, Dylan Brooks 2 2-4 6, Corey Bell 7 5-6 23, Josh Smith 0 0-0 0.
Totals 23 11-19 67.
Talladega 8 18 20 16 – 62
Handley 17 21 15 14 – 67

3-point goals: Talladega 1 (K. Simmons); Handley 10 (J. Martin, G. Martin 5, Bell 4). Total fouls: Talladega 17, Handley 10.

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