Red Devils wishing unhappy holidays to Twin Cities rival

Red Devils wishing unhappy holidays to Twin Cities rival
By MIKE HUTCHENS
Messenger Sports Editor
South Fulton ensured that Twin-Cities rival Fulton City will have a ‘Blue Christmas.’
A pair of lopsided triumphs gave the Red Devils bragging rights and at least partially spoiled the Bulldogs’ holidays Friday night as SF posted wins of 55-15 in the girls’ game and 69-27 in the boys’ nightcap.
Both contests were hastened by the 35-point mercy rule and sent South Fulton into a brief break on a winning note — the Devilettes at 7-4 and the Redmen at 6-5.
The two Big Red entries will participate in the Stewart County Christmas Classic Dec. 27-29.
SF dominated its blue-clad Kentucky neighbors from start to finish in both games Friday.
The Devils particularly exploited Fulton City in the backcourt, forcing as many turnovers as the Bulldogs had points in both games.
It was 22-0 before FC ever tallied in Game 1, while runs of 11 and 12 consecutive points in the second game of the boys’ contest allowed the Redmen to build a 40-10 halftime advantage.
The Bulldog teams fell to 3-3 and 6-4, respectively.
SF 55, Fulton 15 City (G)
Laken Haley scored 10 of her 14 points in the aforementioned opening burst as South Fulton (7-4) was in complete control of all facets of the game.
Buckets by Sierra Coley and Ka-lon Martin capped the explosion before Markesha Dickerson’s 3-point play finally got Fulton City on the board in the final seconds of the opening period.
The Devilettes continued to pull away and build on their commanding margin in the second frame with Aerial Wright’s trifecta just before the intermission buzzer putting the host team up 41-5.
The clock ran continuously throughout the second half via an agreement between the coaches.
SF skipper Curt Lee — who emptied his bench early and used multiple rotation combinations — insisted the no-contest win was good for his squad.
“It gave us a chance to run up and down the floor some and to work on some things that we might have to have in the second half of the season,” Lee said. “We played some zone some and that’s something we might have to go to in certain situations as we get deeper into the season.
“We made some shots early, particularly (Laken) Haley, and I thought we guarded them well — especially off the ball screen. They (Fulton) are better than they have been, we were just able to get on them early.”
Taleeah Cross had a game-high 16 points to lead a parade of 10 different Devilettes who scored.
SF 69, Fulton 27 City (B)
Much like in the opener, the Red Devils overwhelmed Fulton City’s young guards — creating numerous scoring opportunities for themselves off Bulldog floor mistakes.
Tevaris James scored South Fulton’s and the game’s first six points, but it was a pair of second-quarter blitzes that essentially ended any doubt about the outcome.
A 3-pointer by Josh Hollowell and a steal and subsequent layup by T.J. Ingram highlighted the first of those two telling spurts. Another theft and bucket by Ingram and two buckets by Harrison Hawks off Fulton turnovers capped the second. Clint Wells’ long trey just prior to the end of the half made it 40-10.
The Bulldogs — who were missing one-half of their heralded big man tandem in 6-4 Khalil Frame, who was injured in an all-star football practice — ended up with 18 first-half turnovers, just three made field goals and a 4-of-12 performance at the foul line to contribute to their demise.
Like in Game 1, the second half was nothing more than a formality with the mercy rule going into effect at the beginning of the fourth quarter.
“It’s nice to be on the winning side … no matter what the score,” South Fulton skipper Wes Miller — whose team had lost three straight close games by a combined total of 11 points — said afterward. “We could easily be 5-1 in the district instead of 2-4.
“Tonight, I thought we did a good job of pressuring their guards and getting them to turn it over before they could get it downcourt and try to get it into (Jordan) Miller. That was obviously their plan, and we took them out of it with our defensive pressure.”
Hawks had 13 points, James 12 and Keshawn McManus 11 as three SF players scored in double figures. Hawks also added five steals and five assists, while Ryan Moore had a team-high seven rebounds. Skylar Britt had six caroms in a reserve role.
Miller, who recently eclipsed the 1,000-point mark for his career, led Fulton City with 12 markers.
Sports editor Mike Hutchens can be contacted by email at mhutch@ucmessenger.com. Published in The Messenger 12.24.12

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