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West Lincoln boys in semis

Sophomore Duane Marshall pumped in a game-high 17 points to lead four players in double figures as the West Lincoln Bears overcame a sluggish first half to crush the Salem Wildcats 77-37 Thursday night in the opening round of the MHSAA South State 1A Boys Tournament in Jack Case Gymnasium.

“Glad to get the win,” said West Lincoln coach Lane Young. “Salem came out and did a good job shooting the ball against us in the first half.”

In other South 1A action, the French Camp Panthers eluded the Sebastopol Bobcats 54-45, the Hinds AHS Bulldogs upset the Dexter Bulldogs 79-67 and the Durant Tigers thumped the West Lowndes Panthers 81-52.

Tournament action continues today in Jack Case Gymnasium. French Camp tangles with Hinds AHS at 6 p.m. In the night cap, West Lincoln battles Durant at 7:30

The South State championship game is Saturday at 7 p.m. The finalists both advance to the Jackson Coliseum to play in the state tournament, March 1.

West Lincoln 77, Salem 37

West Lincoln and Salem fans saw a tough, physical contest as the Bears (29-3) and Wildcats battled the first quarter. West Lincoln managed to take command with a 20-11 lead.

In the second quarter, Salem (14-13) fought hard to keep the game close. The Bears lead 38-27 at halftime.

In the second half, West Lincoln’s high-powered offense came alive and outscored the Wildcats 39-10 to notch the win.

Tamarcus London helped in the Bears with 16 points. Senior forward Lucas Burris collected a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Jared Case also provided a double-double night with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

“We did not play smart basketball in the first half,” stated Young. “In the second half, we played like we should. We came out and turned up the tempo on Salem and they struggled to get the ball across halfcourt.”

Austin Fazande was the scoring leader for the Wildcats with a team-high 14 points.

“Our effort was very good,” said Salem coach Randy Laird, a West Lincoln alummnus. “We played really well in the first half. In the second half, West Lincoln’s defense shut us down. They have a very good team.”

French Camp 54, Sebastopol 45

Dye Carter paced the Panthers of French Camp (18-3) with 14 points. Jesse Hasket contributed 10 points.

Eric Burks pumped in a game-high 20 points to lead the Bobcats (17-8).

Hinds AHS 79, Dexter 67

Hinds AHS had three players score in double digits as Sterling Joiner netted a team-high 22 points. DeAndre Bolton provided 12 points and Kaleb Williams had 10 points.

Clifford Fernandez was the top scorer for Dexter with a tournament-high 27 points. Vonta Ownes contributed 17 points and Dante Butler had 14.

Durant 81, West Lowndes 52

Theodore Haynes was the Tigers’ offensive leader with 22 points. Timothy McLendon added 14 points. Clay Roby provided 11 points.

Wendell Ricues directed the Panthers of West Lowndes with 12 points. Deion Ames helped with 11 points.