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Junior Devils put another trophy in case

Junior Devils put another trophy in case

By RANDY CAVIN
Special to The Messenger
Make it 2-for-2 for the South Fulton Middle School boys.
The Jr. Red Devils followed up their Obion County School System Tournament championship by claiming the title in the Area 5 Tournament with a 46-30 victory over Martin Thursday night.
SF, now 16-2, advances to the West Sectional — the final stop in the middle school tournament series — where they’ll play Union City Saturday night (8:20) in the opening round at Martin Middle School.
The Red Devils and Tornadoes (13-3 and the Area 4 runnersup) split a pair of regular season meetings.
A four-point play propelled South Fulton to the Area tourney title over Martin Middle School Thursday night.
The Red Devils went on a 13-point run in the last 3:58 of the game. Kody Davidson was fouled while making a 3-pointer and converted it into a 4-point play after head coach Wes Miller called a timeout to start the 13-point run.
“For once, I finally called a good time-out because we were not going to run the play right,” Miller said. “Kody actually called the time-out and he bailed me out. It was good that I had a chance to set that up. I have faith in him, and he is probably the hardest worker when it comes to jump shots.”
The Panthers looked like they were going to run away with game in the first period. Martin opened the game with a Matt McMillan 3-pointer and went on a seven-point run from there.
Davidson got the Red Devils on the scoreboard on a jumper with 1:50 to play. Martin closed out the first period on a basket by Tyler Hopper and another 3-pointer by McMillan to lead 12-2 at the end of one.
SF got back in the game on a pair of baskets by Brandon Walker and one by Demarco Walker to make it 12-8 to begin the second period. Davidson connected on a triple to get SF within 14-13 with 2:35 to play.
The Red Devils took over the lead with 1:36 to go in the half on a pair of free throws by Brandon Walker to make it a 17-16 game. Martin retook the lead on Hopper’s layup before Walker’s basket gave the lead back to SF, 19-18, to close out the half.
“We came out a little flat, and we told our kids Martin is going to give them a good game,” Miller said. “I told them that Martin would be ready to come out and play and we were not. We decided in the second quarter that we were going to play.”
The Red Devils outscored the Panthers 17-6 in the second period.
Martin pulled back out in front on a 3-pointer by Ryan Sams to make it 24-22 with 2:24 to play in the third. Demarco Walker tied it up on his basket, but then Martin’s Ty Kelly made two shots from the charity stripe for the Panthers’ last lead of the game.
Jyriq Jones gave SF a three-point lead at 29-26 on three free throws when he was fouled by Sams at the buzzer on a 3-point attempt.
Martin pulled to within one to start the final period on a pair of free throws by Cameron Jones. They would score only two more points in the period, though, as the Red Devils used a pressure defense to force the Weakley Countians into some mistakes. The Panthers turned the ball over eight times in the fourth period.
Jones made two baskets to give SF a 33-28 lead before McMillan made Martin’s last basket of the game. Jones scored nine of his 13 points in the final period and also had six assists in the game.
“We showed our dominance in the fourth quarter,” Miller said. “We told our kids to keep putting pressure on them and eventually they would turn the ball over. I watched them last night (Wednesday) against Ridgemont and that is what they did.”
Davidson scored 15 points for the game-high and had three steals. Brandon Walker scored 10 points and had four rebounds. Zaccious Mays blocked two shots, grabbed six rebounds and scored two points for SF. Demarco Walker had six rebounds and six points.
The Lady Panthers (13-5) beat Paris Inman 37-20 in the girls’ championship game and will play Area 4 champion Union City (10-7) at 4:20 on Saturday.

Published in The Messenger 2.1.13

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