Hazlehurst rallies to beat Wesson

Published 11:30 am Friday, February 5, 2016

Daily Leader / Marty Albright / Wesson's Anthony Jones (0) drives to the basket as teammate Kendrick Brown (20) sets a block against Hazlehurst's ZyQuaris Watkins (4) Thursday night at the Snake Pit.

Daily Leader / Marty Albright / Wesson’s Anthony Jones (0) drives to the basket as teammate Kendrick Brown (20) sets a block against Hazlehurst’s ZyQuaris Watkins (4) Thursday night at the Snake Pit.

WESSON – Hazlehurst rallied back in the second half to steal two division wins from Wesson Thursday in Region 7-3A action at the Snake Pit.

In the girls’ game, the Lady Indians outscored the Wesson Lady Cobras 15-8 in the fourth quarter to clinch a 46-41 victory.

In boys’ action, Shantavis Vardaman scored the winning layup as the buzzer sounded to lift his Indians over Wesson 69-68.

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Wesson continues action today as it hosts division rival Franklin County. Junior varsity action begins at 5 p.m., followed by the varsity games at 6 and 7:30 p.m.

Lady Indians 46, Lady Cobras 41

The Lady Cobras (6-16, 1-6) ruled the first half as they jumped on the Lady Indians to claim a 26-15 lead at halftime.

The Lady Indians cut into the Lady Cobras’ lead with a 16-7 run to trail Wesson 33-31 heading into the final frame.

In the fourth, Hazlehurst’s defense continued to disrupt Wesson’s game plan and the Lady Indians put together a 15-8 run to collect the win.

“The girls played really well offensively and defensively in the first half,” said Wesson coach Rusty Newman. “As the game progressed, Hazlehurst’s defensive caused some problems for us and we just did not finish the game the way we wanted.”

Jashia Smith was the top scorer for the Lady Cobras with 15 points, eight rebounds, three steals and four assists. Carnesha Green was the leader on the boards with 15 rebounds and scored nine points. Aurianna Vaughn contributed seven points and had five rebounds. Jamiya Christmas netted eight points and grabbed seven rebounds. Alaysha Mims finished with two points.

Kanemia Reeves sparked the Lady Indians’ offense with 12 points. Marcia Stewart chipped in nine points. D’Asia Thigpen netted seven points. Allyson Banks provided five points. Runicha Murray scored four points. Kennedi West had three points. Asia Madison, Destinequa Stewart and Mirah Reed finished with two points each.

Hazlehurst 69, Wesson 68

Wesson (14-9, 4-3) came out strong and took control on the first half to claim a 40-29 lead at halftime.

The Indians outscored the Cobras 22-10 in the third quarter to capture a slim 51-50 lead at the end of the period.

In the fourth quarter, both teams scored 18 points each. Wesson had a slim lead 68-67 lead with under 7 seconds left when Hazlehurst rushed down the court for the final shot. Dennis Shannon attempted a three-pointer from the corner, but it rimmed out. Vardaman secured the rebound and put it back up for an easy score to give the Indians the win at the buzzer.

“We started the game off really well, but we did not maintain that intensity in the second half, which allowed Hazlehurst to stay in the game,” said Newman. “In the second half, we did not crash the boards and we made too many careless turnovers that hurt us in the end.”

Anthony Jones powered the Cobras with a double-double performance of 37 points and 11 rebounds. Eric Rhymes chipped in 22 points and had eight rebounds. Kendrick Brown scored six points and had five rebounds. Shemar Dickerson had three points.

Hazlehurst had four players to score in double figures as Dennis Shannon led the charge with 17 points. Zmaya Walton contributed 15 points. Cameron Alexander and Vardaman netted 13 points each. Dewey Shannon provided six points. Roosevelt Earls scored four points and Jaylon Larry had one point.