PREP BASKETBALL: Saints edge past Eagles 45-43; Lady Eagles handle Lady Saints


St. Bernard's David Kim defends an inbound pass from Vinemont's Katch Johnson during the Saints' 45-43 win over the Eagles. (Sammy Confer for The Cullman Tribune)

VINEMONT – St. Bernard made the trip up Highway 31 Thursday afternoon for some hoops action and the junior varsity boys game kicked off the action between the Vinemont Eagles and the Saints.

(1-2) Vinemont 41 – (1-2) St. Bernard 12 (JV boys)

It was all Vinemont from the start as the Eagles jumped out to a quick 16-0 lead after the first quarter to take the first game of the day.

Nine different Eagle players scored at least two points in the game. They were led by William Rhodes, who finished with nine points, four rebounds and a steal. Clark Whatley ended up with eight points and five rebounds. Tanner Brown and Conner Johnson each finished with five points. Samuel Maldonado and Marc Forster each added four points. Dalton Whitehead, Gabriel Friedrich and Bryce Perkins (four steals) each added two points in the win.

Nick Brothas led the way for St. Bernard with three points and three steals. Caleb Norman, Druss Hays, Joseph Arriaga and Cisco Tona each added two points.

(1-2) Vinemont 48 – (1-2) St. Bernard 28 (varsity girls)

It was a close, low-scoring start to the game between the Lady Eagles and Lady Saints. After a Bridget Gallegos three made it a 6-4 game in favor of the Lady Eagles, layups by Sadie Stanley and Kanasta Daniel increased the Vinemont lead to 10-4 after one.

The Lady Eagles’ defense smothered St. Bernard’s offense in the second period, holding the Lady Saints to just six points. Vinemont had six players find the scoring column in the first half as the Lady Eagles went into the locker room up, 22-10.

St. Bernard tried to get something going on both sides of the ball, but Vinemont was just too much for the Lady Saints as the Lady Eagles outscored them, 22-6, to blow it open in the third period and go on to win the game.

Bailey Preiss led the way for Vinemont with 17 points and four steals. Stanley ended up with nine points, nine rebounds and four steals. Daniel ended up with seven points, 15 rebounds, a block and a steal. Alexis Helton added six points, 15 rebounds and a pair of steals. Madysen Hacker also finished with six points and added nine rebounds. Valarie Stacks added three points and three rebounds.

The Lady Saints were led by Claire Sanders, who finished with eight points and a pair of steals. Emma Tafazoli added six points, 11 rebounds and a steal. Macy Whaley ended up with six points, four rebounds, two steals and two blocks. Gallegos also finished with six points and she added a block as well. Jackelyn Arteaga finished with two points.

(3-0) St. Bernard 45 – (0-3) Vinemont 43 (varsity boys)

The varsity boys game started out like a three-point contest as Vinemont’s Katch Johnson nailed a pair of treys to give the Eagles a quick 6-0 lead. A three each by Carson Holmes and John Rose, plus a free throw by Gavin Whaley, gave the Saints a 7-6 lead. After a trey by Curtis Kennedy made it 9-7 in favor of the Eagles, both defenses took over with only four points scored the rest of the quarter and those belonged to the Saints as they took an 11-9 lead into the second period.

The game stayed close going into halftime as St. Bernard wound up taking a 20-14 lead into the locker rooms.

Vinemont started out the third quarter red-hot from behind the arc as Connor Handley nailed two, and Johnson added another one as part of an 11-2 run to give the Eagles a 25-22 lead. But the Saints countered with a trio of treys of their own as Alex Shoaff hit one, and Carson Holmes nailed a pair as a 9-2 St. Bernard run gave them a 31-27 lead. Then, both defenses tightened up and only allowed a combined 10 points in the last 4:15 of the period. The Saints held a 37-31 lead going into the final period.

A Hudson Wood free throw, later followed by a Johnson trey, made it 37-35, but St. Bernard countered once again as Rose and Whaley scored the next seven points to increase the Saints' lead to 44-37. Handley got fouled while shooting a three, and he hit all three free throws; Wood later added a huge three from the top of the key to make it a 44-43 game with 1:09 remaining in the contest.

The Eagles were forced to foul as they sent David Kim to the line twice. He only hit 1-of-3 free throws; his last miss gave Vinemont a chance to win the game with 6.5 seconds remaining. The Eagles got the ball to Johnson and he got a nice, clean look, but it didn’t go in as the Saints hung on to win the game in their road opener.

Rose finished with 14 points, six rebounds and a pair of steals for St. Bernard. Holmes ended up with nine points and a steal. Kim added eight points and seven rebounds. Caleb Guthery finished with six points, four rebounds and a steal. Gavin Whaley added five points and 11 rebounds. Shoaff finished with three points.

Johnson finished with 12 points, four rebounds, two steals and two blocks for Vinemont. Handley added nine points, four rebounds and a steal. Kennedy ended up with eight points. Wood finished with six points and five rebounds. Jordan Hall added four points, four rebounds, a steal and a block. Clay Rogers finished with two points and eight rebounds. Collin Teichmiller added two points and a steal.

St. Bernard will travel to Winston County on Friday. The Lady Eagles’ next game will be on Nov. 27 at home against Falkville. Vinemont’s boys will take part in the Marx Optical Thanksgiving Classic starting Saturday, Nov. 17 in Decatur.

Other Local Scores

Cold Springs 46 – Locust Fork 28 (varsity boys)

Cold Springs 61 – Locust Fork 55 (varsity girls)

Cold Springs 47 – Locust Fork 15 (JV girls)

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