BHS boys whip Hazlehurst; girls tumble

Published 6:00 am Tuesday, October 31, 2000

HAZLEHURST — Brookhaven junior guard Fred Mackabee scored ateam-high 18 points, to lead the Panthers to an 86-58 Monday nightsmashing of the Hazlehurst Indians.

In the varsity girls game, the Hazlehurst Lady Indians ran pastthe Brookhaven Lady Panthers 65-47.

The Lady Panthers travel down Highway 583 to meet the EnterpriseLady Yellow Jackets, on Thursday. The JV girls game begins at 6p.m., followed by the varsity girls game at 7:30.

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The Panthers and Lady Panthers will open the home portion oftheir schedule on Saturday, when Franklin County comes calling tothe James A. Sinclair Gymnasium. A JV boys game gets underway at 5,followed by the varsity girls at 6. The varsity boys game concludesthe evening’s activities at 7:30.

The Panthers (2-0) outscored the Indians 50-29 in thesecond half to secure the win.

Hazlehurst (0-2) kept this close throughout the firsthalf; leading at one point, 15-14 on a steal and lay-up by seniorguard Mario Gary. The Indians would trail Brookhaven 21-17 at theend of the first quarter.

Gary scored the first 4 points of the second quarter totie the game at 21-21.

Brookhaven would regain the lead for good on a shortjumper by sophomore center Lamar Hall. Mackabee pumped in 6 pointsand the Panthers held a 36-29 lead at halftime.

Gary scored on a layup midway through the third to cutthe Indian’s deficit to 4, 44-40. He led all scorers with 26points, including 2 treys.

That would be as close as Hazlehurst would get.Brookhaven used a 16-4 run to enter the final 8 minutes leading60-44.

Corey Bryant and Matt Fitzsimmons combined for 15 pointsin the quarter.

Panther head coach Preston Wilson and assistant DanPresley began to empty their bench, as all 13 players that dressedsaw some playing time.

“We really picked it up defensively in the second half,”said Wilson following the game. “Corey (Bryant) was relentless onthe offensive boards.”

Wilson was referring to Bryant’s domination on theoffensive glass. He outhustled his Indian counterparts on nearlyevery offensive attempt by Brookhaven. Bryant had 9 offensiverebounds.

Following Mackabee in double figures were Bryant andBrown with 14 points apiece. Fitzsimmons added 10.

The Lady Panthers (0-1) were in this game until the veryend. Every time Hazlehurst tried to run away, Brookhaven wouldfight back. But it was the Lady Indians’ quickness and leapingability that carried them to their opening win of theseason.

“They outjumped us, outquicked us and outhustled us,”said Lady Panther head coach Ronald Gill following the game. “Wemissed too many easy shots.”

The Lady Indians (0-1) held a slim 16-12 lead after thefirst 8 minutes of play.

Brookhaven cut the Hazlehurst advantage to 3 points,26-23 on one-of-two free throws by sophomore center AyanaTillman.

Hazlehurst, coached by Alfreda Craft, started to pullaway at this point of the game. The Lady Indians entertained a33-26 lead at the intermission.

The Lady Panthers kept the game close in the decisivethird period. Guard Julianna Wallace hit a basket to pullBrookhaven within 3 points, at 40-37 with 1:30 left in the period.Her team found themselves down 43-37 entering the finalstanza.

Nikki Blakely, a 5-foot-9 senior forward, scored 8 ofher team-high 20 points in the quarter.

Hazlehurst’s quickness was too much to overcome. LatoyaJohnson, a transfer from South Pike, scored 9 of her game-high 24points during the final 8 minutes.

Wallace pulled down 8 rebounds and Blakely added5.