Olivia Ball scored 14 points in the third quarter of West Point's 77-28 rout of Hamilton Friday night. (Nick Griffin for the Cullman Tribune)
WEST POINT – The Warriors and Lady Warriors opened up area play at home Friday night against Hamilton and the two squads split their varsity matchups. The Lady Warriors blew past the Lady Aggies in convincing fashion 77-28 but the Warriors were handed a 58-55 loss after a dramatic second-half comeback came up just short.
West Point 77 – Hamilton 28 (varsity girls)
The Lady Warriors dominated this game from the opening tip. West Point’s defensive pressure made it difficult for the Lady Aggies to get the ball across half court much less put points on the board and they quickly found themselves down 12-0. Hamilton was held scoreless until midway through the first quarter and trailed the Lady Warriors 26-3 going into the second.
West Point not only smothered the Lady Aggies on defense, it also dominated on the glass; the Lady Warriors stretched their lead to 48-11 by the halftime break. West Point’s Miriam Oldacre outscored Hamilton by herself with 15 points in the first half.
The Lady Aggies hit some shots early in the third quarter, but Olivia Ball eliminated any chance of a comeback by putting up 14 points in the frame, 12 of which came on four shots from three-point range. The offensive burst put the Lady Warriors on top 71-21 going into the final period and with the hot clock in play, West Point held on to win it 77-28.
Oldacre led the Lady Warriors in scoring with 18 points followed by Ball and Lexi Shadix, who each finished with 14. Mackenzie Carter also reached double digits for West Point, finishing with 11.
The Lady Warriors will be back on the floor Dec. 3 when they travel to Deshler.
Hamilton 58 – West Point 55 (varsity boys)
After scoring the first bucket of the night to go up 2-0, the Warriors would not take another lead in this game until midway through the fourth quarter. Hamilton went on a 15-0 run after West Point’s first basket to take a commanding lead early on and held on to a 19-9 lead after the first quarter.
A 3-pointer from Tyler White cut the Aggie lead to just six in the second quarter, but Hamilton was scoring inside with ease and went on another run to stretch its lead to 35-24 at the half. Kolton Sapp led West Point with eight points at halftime.
Midway through the third quarter, the Warriors began to really chip away and get back in the game. West Point managed to get back within six and Levi Farley knocked down a shot from just past half court to cut it to 43-40 at the third quarter buzzer. Farley’s miraculous shot gave the Warriors the shot in the arm they needed, and the final quarter became a nail-biter that went down to the final shot.
An Aubrey Cleghorn jumper put West Point on top 45-43 with five minutes remaining, but there were many more ties and lead changes to come. Will Brown got a layup to go that tied the game at 50 with less than three minutes to play, but the Aggies continued to answer with baskets of their own. With less than two minutes to play, Will Cochran laid one in to tie it up at 52, but once again, Hamilton responded and retook the lead. With 20 seconds to play, Sapp knocked down two free throws to make it 56-55, Hamilton. The Warriors needed one more stop, but the Aggies moved the ball down the floor quickly for another easy bucket to take a 58-55 lead. Sapp got one more good look at a three but couldn’t get it to drop. West Point’s Rylan Jones was able to get off a full-court heave in the final seconds to tie the game, but the ball bounced just off the front of the rim and the comeback fell just short.
Sapp led West Point in scoring with 17 points and the rest of the offense came very much by committee. White, Farley and Jones all had big buckets for the Warriors in the second half and finished with nine, eight and seven points, respectively.
The Warriors will look to bounce back with a win when they travel to take on Deshler Dec. 3.
Hamilton 39 – West Point 35 (JV boys)
West Point 56 – Hamilton 17 (ninth-grade boys)
Other Friday night scores:
Cullman 60 – Jasper 21 (varsity girls)
Cold Springs 43 – Holly Pond 27 (varsity girls)
Fairview 60 – Vinemont 16 (varsity girls)
Susan Moore 76 – Hanceville 35 (varsity girls)
Lynn 34 – St. Bernard 19 (varsity girls)
Cullman 70 – Jasper 58 (varsity boys)
Cold Springs 67 – Holly Pond 53 (varsity boys)
Fairview 44 – Vinemont 41 (varsity boys)
Lynn 43 – St. Bernard 39 (varsity boys)
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