E.A. Sports Today

More than a scorer

Anniston’s Kite was held scoreless in the first quarter Saturday, but he did so much more to help the Bulldogs rout Sacred Heart

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today
It took a while for Anniston guard Antonio Kite to find his scoring touch Saturday night, but they didn’t keep him down long.
Kite went scoreless in the first quarter for the first time he suited up in a game this season Friday night, but he got on track in the second quarter and it made a difficult draw even harder for Sacred Heart.
The Bulldogs were already up 10 points by the end of the first quarter without Kite scoring, but with “Spoodie” filling it up in the second they more than doubled that lead on the way to a 70-43 victory.
“I just like to get my teammates involved tonight,” he said. “I know my jump shot wasn’t falling tonight, so I just started passing and getting to the hole.”
He admitted “it’s rare” to go scoreless in the first quarter. The last time it happened was when he didn’t play against Plainview. In his three lowest first quarters of the season before Saturday night, he had three points against Hamilton and finished with 14, five against Hoover and finished with 34 and five against Shelby County and finished with 19.
It’s not that the Cardinals were doing anything masterful on him, he was just focusing on other parts of his game, like defense and getting his teammates the ball. He broke out with 12 points in the second quarter and still wound up being the game’s top scorer with 17 points.
“He got much more aggressive in the second quarter, but he was really, really good defensively,” Anniston coach Torry Brown said. “I don’t know how many steals he had on the ball but it had to have been four or five and the one he took out of the air was a super play.
“He’s a great athlete, the best athlete on our team in terms of running, jumping, changing direction. He just came out trying to get other guys the ball (Saturday). Spoodie’s Spoodie. He can turn it on and off. Not a lot of guys can.”
Meanwhile, it turned out to be a breakout night for Bulldogs’ forward Daveon Dukes as well. Playing in his second game since joining the team after football, Dukes scored 16 points, largely on 10-for-12 from the free throw line. He had eight points in his season debut against Sylacauga 10 days ago.
“I’m getting comfortable, I’m getting to learn how to play with the guys and they’re making me feel like family,” Dukes said. “I couldn’t wait because it’s probably my favorite sport.”
Brown is glad to have him. He’ll also have two other new players before too deep into the new year. Football running back A.J. Brown is expected to be released from his post-football injury recovery in mid-January and he’ll add a similar dimension as Dukes. And Jacksonville transfer DeMarien Stewart is expected to play with the Bulldogs for the first time Monday.
“He really gives us some aggression and toughness that I think we lack without him,” Brown said of Dukes. “And he can shoot the heck out of free throws. I went back and watched our game last year and he hit a lot from the foul line then.”
Anniston 70, Sacred Heart 43
Taishun Hall 2 2-2 6, Jarek Burroughs 1 0-2 2, Jack Miller 2 0-0 6, Allen Marshall 1 2-3 4, Devin Barksdale 1 0-2 2, Javen Croft 0 0-0 0, Anthony Bothwell 0 0-0 0, Delroy Francis 1 0-2 2, Cade Landers 4 2-2 10, Mykhel Simmons 1 1-1 3, Aaron Moore 4 0-2 8. Totals 17 7-16 43.
ANNISTON – Mark Toyer 3 2-4 8, Antonio Kite 5 6-6 17, Kwame Milton 4 1-2 9, Alex Teague 0 0-0 0, Tyree Carmichael 0 0-0 0, Tahj Jones 3 0-0 6, Tadyn Jones 0 0-0 0, Malcolm Harvey 3 2-5 8, Daveon Dukes 3 10-12 16, Jackobe Collins 0 0-0 0, Troy Hall 2 2-5 6, Khalil Peoples 0 0-0 0. Totals 23 23-34 70. 
Sacred Heart    9    9   20  5  –  43
Anniston          19  23 23  5  –  70
3-point goals: Sacred Heart 2 (Miller 2); Anniston 1 (Kite). Technical fouls: Francis. Fouled out: Francis, Moore. Total fouls: Sacred Heart 23, Anniston 19. Officials: Robinson, Holmes, Wood.

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