Hanceville defeats Vinemont, 57-43, to advance to championship Thursday


HANCEVILLE – After defeating Oakman to clinch the area title Jan. 13, Hanceville looked to get off to a quick start in the first game of the night against the Vinemont Eagles. That was easier said than done as it was a low-scoring first quarter between both teams. Brendan Flanigan scored five straight points for Hanceville to give them a 10-4 lead. Garrett Boland hit a shot to cut the lead to 10-6, then just before the first quarter ended, Corbin Barnett nailed a three to make it a 10-9 game after one.

Barnett nailed his second three of the night to give the Eagles a 12-10 lead to start off the second quarter. After Hanceville took a 14-12 lead on layups by Flanigan and Cameron Barbee, Seth Campbell went 1-of-2 from the line to cut the lead to 14-13. After R.J. Evans and Boland traded baskets, Evans and Fred Ellis led Hanceville on a 10-2 run as they scored all of the points during the run to give them a 26-17 lead at the half.

Hanceville continued to dominate in the third quarter, stretching their lead to 33-19 after an Ellis three. Boland and Blanton helped cut into the lead as they scored the remaining points in the quarter, Boland had seven and Blanton had two, as they cut the deficit to 37-28 heading into the final quarter.

Campbell cut the lead to six with a three. Ellis answered with a three of his own to make it a 40-31 game, but Campbell cut it back to six with another three. After Hanceville's Josh Stanley went 1-of-2 from the line, Jaythan Blanton hit a layup to cut the deficit to just five at 41-36. But they did not get any closer as turnovers proved costly for them, plus Hanceville outscored Vinemont, 16-7, the rest of the way, to clinch not only a spot in the championship game on Thursday night against Carbon Hill, they clinched a spot in the sub-regionals next week. Carbon Hill clinched a spot in the championship game by defeating Oakman, 91-84, in the final game of the night.

Evans was one of four Hanceville players in double figure scoring as he led the way with 18 points. Flanigan ended up with 14 points. Ellis and Stanley each finished with 10 points. They split both meetings with Carbon Hill during the regular season. They lost at Carbon Hill, 57-35, but they took their last meeting at Hanceville, 44-40.

Boland led Vinemont with 17 points, and Barnett finished with 11 points.


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