West splits two with Oilers
By By Jeff Byrd/staff writer
Feb. 6, 2002
Form held at Collinsville in one of the last remaining Division 5-3A tilts before postseason tournament time begins next week.
Divisional front-runners in the Heidelberg Oilers and the West Lauderdale Lady Knights took wins on Tuesday night to lock up the top seeds in the division tournament which will be hosted by Heidelberg.
Coach Jody Hurst's Lady Knights placed four players in double figures to beat the Heidelberg Lady Oilers 74-56. The Heidelberg boys came back to down the Knights 66-55.
Heidelberg boys 66
West Lauderdale 55
Heidelberg showed why it will be a heavy favorite in the boys division tournament overcoming a foul-plagued first half to slip past the Knights.
The Oilers improved to 22-6 on the season and a perfect 11-0 inside the division. Heidelberg's last division game will be at Newton County on Friday.
Oilers Coach Ted Williams was glad to see his team bounce back in the second half after trailing by as much as nine in the first half.
Marvin McDonald dropped in a three-pointer off the first play of the third quarter to give the Oilers their first lead of the game at 32-30. Another basket by McDonald would make it 34-30.
The Knights countered with a bucket from Calvin Moore to get it back to 34-32, but that would be the last time they would be within range of the lead.
A three-pointer by Joe Agee and a putback by Wright moved the spread out to eight at 41-33. The Knights were unable to capitalize on several free-throw opportunities. They were just 5-of-12 from the line in the third quarter.
The lead stayed around eight until Derrick Turner hit a pair of free throws for a 10-point lead with 6:32 left. A tip in, and eight straight free throws helped push the Oilers out to a 60-44 advantage over the next three minutes.
Down 17, the Knights made one last push behind three-pointers from Daniel Huggins and Chuck Brewer to close back to within 11 at 64-53. Heidelberg, however, was 10 of 12 from the line in the final quarter compared to West's 8-for-20 showing in the second half.
McDonald finished with 17 points to lead Heidelberg. Turner added 12 followed by Fred Stephens with 10. Wright and Jesse Jones had nine each.
Moore paced the Knights with 15. Karlos Lewis chipped in 12 and Boo Ramsey had 11.
West Lauderdale girls 74
The Lady Knights moved to 10-1 in the division and locked up the top seed for the tournament. West closes out its regular season at defending Class 3A state champion Southeast Lauderdale on Friday.
The West girls, now 27-3, were able to use the strong arm of J.J. Huggins to get easy fast-break buckets against Heidelberg. The beneficiary of Huggins' passes was guard Patty Monroe who finished with a game high 23 points.
Monroe made three such baskets in the fourth quarter and that helped turn a tight 43-38 game into a more comfortable 53-40 spread.
West would grab a 17-point lead at 57-40 when Heidelberg came back with consecutive three-pointers from Jessica Yates and Princess Bender. Yates hit two in the spurt and Bender's capper made it an eight-point game at 59-51.
The Lady Knights steadied themselves by running a four-out offense. Kristina Gardner scored three lay-ups out of the set and Monroe added one to take the lead back to 16 at 67-51.
West opened the game by scoring the first 12 points. It was 18-8 after one quarter. Heidelberg used a 13-11 second quarter to make it 29-21 at the half.