HANCEVILLE – Championship Saturday of the 2018 Cullman County Basketball Tournament kicked off with the Ninth-Grade Boys Championship Game, featuring the top-seeded Fairview Aggies and third-seeded Vinemont Eagles. After a back-and-forth contest, the Aggies came up with the title, 43-38.
Both teams started out strong on offensively as Fairview's Jack Brown and Vinemont's Collin Teichmiller led their respective squads in the opening period, with Brown putting eight of his 15 in the quarter, and Teichmiller tallying six of his 10 in the period as well. A Brown layup made it a 10-8 advantage for the Aggies, but an Austin Riddle free throw, followed by a layup by Caleb Sharpe, gave the Eagles an 11-10 lead after one.
The second period was more of the same for both squads, back-and-forth, with neither team gaining a huge advantage, the largest lead being five for Fairview at 24-19 after a three, then a pair of free throws by Owen Yarbrough, who finished with 18 for the game. But, just like the first quarter, Vinemont finished strong, with a pair of free throws and then a layup by Teichmiller, and that made it a 24-23 game at the half.
A Curtis Kennedy trey to begin the third period gave the Eagles a 26-24 lead, but after that, both teams went into shut-down mode on defense, allowing a combined 13 points in the period. A Yarbrough three, followed later on by a Brown free throw, gave the Aggies a 30-28 lead, but Bosten McDuffee tied the game at 30 on a layup, which was the score after three.
Fairview went inside to start the final period, as two layups by Clayton Strane and one by Peyton Bailey gave the Aggies a 36-31 lead, then 39-31 on another Yarbrough trey. The Eagles refused to quit, however, as they cut it to 39-35 after layups by Riddle and William Rhodes. A big 3-point play off an offensive rebound by Riddle made it a 41-38 game with 42.8 seconds remaining. But a pair of Brown free throws with 7.1 seconds remaining clinched the championship win for the Aggies.
Yarbrough and Brown earned All-Tournament honors for Fairview, while Teichmiller and Kennedy made it for Vinemont. Michael Owens earned honors for Good Hope, while Carter Thornton and Brannon Bright made it for West Point.
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