GRENADA – A few first half mistakes by Oak Hill Academy didn’t really play factor in Thursday night’s victory over Kirk.
Instead, it was 30-point second half performance by the Raiders that earned a 52-38 win.
With a 13-8 advantage for Oak Hill after the opening quarter, the game remained close until Kirk hit a three pointer at the buzzer to cut the deficit to three heading into the half 22-19.
“We came out in the second half and pretty much controlled that entire half of the ball game,” head coach Brian Middleton said. “AJ (Jones) hit a three at the buzzer to end the third and after that, our kids knew that we were going to win.”
Kirk scored 11 in the third, but the Raiders defense really stepped up and made stops when they needed while scoring points at the other end.
Jones finished with a team-best 19 points and seven rebounds while John Wesley Williamson knocked 14 after going 6-of-9 from the floor. Reid
Posey had seven points and 11 boards.
“Our last game plan key was to step up and win and we knew we could do it,” said Middleton.
The goal now for the Raiders is to get off to a hot start in district and to string together a few consecutive victories along the way.
Meanwhile the junior high boys have been unstoppable, moving to 9-0 after their 45-25 win. Leading 12-10 at the half, the Raiders went on a 17-6 in the third quarter to put the game out of reach.
“They’re really an athletic group,” Middleton said. “They get up and down the floor extremely well and they’re fun to watch.”
Drew Riley and Matthew Gwathney led the team with nine points apiece while Dakota O’Bryant had eight.
Girls: Kirk 48-45 Oak Hill
Earlier this season, the Lady Raiders picked up an emotional overtime win over Kirk, Thursday it was a different outcome.
Oak Hill was outscored 14-5 in the fourth quarter as Kirk found a way to get the victory and even the regular season matchup.
“We did a poor job of adjusting to things that we normally do,” head coach Stan Hughey said. “We broke down defensively and didn’t guard very well.”
The girls had a few mental mistakes early and found themselves in foul trouble, but that didn’t seem to have a negative effect in the first half because after a 12-12 first quarter, Oak Hill only trailed by a point at half time, 26-25.
Kirk’s top player Carmen Woods scored 18 points in the first half alone, but after switching to Tori Ellis to guard her, she was held to seven, all in the fourth.
Oak Hill got hot in the third quarter, knocking down 13-points to grab a four point advantage heading into the final eight minutes.
Kirk rallied with 14 points in the fourth to get the win.
“We did a great job rebounding offensively,” Hughey said. “But we missed a lot of inside shots. We didn’t communicate well enough or adjust well enough on the fly and that was the difference in the game.”
Tori Ellis led the girls with 13 points and seven rebounds while Anna Ready chipped in with 10. Rachel Herndon was the leading rebounder with 11.
In junior high action, the Lady Raiders were able to withstand a 17-point fourth effort by Kirk and squeak by with a 34-33 win. Oak Hill led at the half 21-16 and shutdown their opponents in the fourth, not giving up a single basket.
Sarah Dill once again led the team in scoring with 17.View more articles in: