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KERSHAW The unbeaten Andrew Jackson boys bounced back in a hurry to snap a long hoops skid against county rival Lancaster with a 57-51 comeback win on Friday night.
The Vols posted their first basketball win over the Bruins going back to the 1998 season when AJ downed the Bruins 62-60 in its holiday tournament.
AJ’s six-point win gave the Vols a hoops split after the Lady Bruins took a 57-38 win in the varsity opener.
The 2-0 Vols, up 14-11 after one period, built a 29-26 lead at the break, but LHS used a 4-0 run to open the second half to take a short-lived 30-29 edge.
AJ answered with a pivotal 11-3 run as senior guard Justin Sellers, who hit all 12 of his points in the second half, aided the Vols’ cause with seven points in the third period.
“When we fell behind, we didn’t panic,” AJ coach Dale Reeves said. “This is a big win for our confidence and it proves we can finish. Our young guys stepped up for us.”
The Vols led 40-33 after three, but LHS made a run and sliced the gap to three on a Mike Catoe trey, but AJ stayed in control for the win.
Sellers hit 5-6 free throws in the final period to aid the AJ effort.
The Vols were led by junior Ryan Miller, who scored 19 – 10 in the second half.
“We had a real good practice Thursday and things came together and clicked for us,” Reeves said. “Our defensive effort was solid. We kept a hand in their face and made them take tough shots.”
Tremaine Jackson scored nine and Drew Gardner hit six for AJ. Omar Truesdale tallied five and Daniel Wright had four. Robert Massey added two points.
LHS senior guard Shurdell Wright led LHS, 0-2, with 15 points. Ron Trapps tallied 13 and Catoe had 11. Nehemiah Stewart and Gerard Brace added four each. Tracy Ingram and Jonathon McGriff had two each.
In the girls’ game, Lancaster used a balanced attack and ignited on a key 17-4 third-period run to key the Lady Bruins’ 57-38 win over the Lady Volunteers.
Lancaster held a 32-25 lead at the half, but ignited with a 17-4 run to forge a 49-29 lead with a period to play.
The Lady Bruins sparked their third-period charge with a 12-0 surge over a five-minute span in the decisive quarter.
“The third quarter was the key for us,” LHS coach Ronnie Robinson said. “We made some key adjustments at the half and stepped up our transition. Defense was the key.”
Tamesha Fletcher led LHS with 16 points. Tara Tipton netted eight and Shannon Truesdale tallied seven.
Quana Jones hit five, while Cherrell Cousar, Keondra Jenkins and Dimaya Jones added four points each. Almesha Catoe hit three points. Quita Knox, Shaniqua Waters and Laquisha Stewart had two each.
Briana Wright led the Lady Vols with 16 and Jazzy Gripper netted 11. Racheal Dippel added seven. Halle Thompson scored three and Erica Jones hit one.
“We had too many turnovers and got in foul trouble,” said AJ coach Dennis Farmer. “We need better execution. Lancaster has talent and their overall depth was the difference.”
AJ visits Indian Land on Tuesday, while Lancaster hosts Nation Ford in its home opener.
The Bruins host the Vols in a rematch on Friday.