ADDISON, Ala. — Area foes, the Sulligent Blue Devils and the hometown Addison Bulldogs, squared off in a pair of basketball games and the outcomes were divided. The Lady Dawgs dominated the Lady Devils from start to finish, winning 38-23 and improved to 5-0 with the win. The second game was a back and forth contest that ended with the Blue Devils handing the Dawgs their first loss of the season, 71-63. Addison drops to 4-1 while the Devils improve to 5-1.
Addison 38 – Sulligent 23 (varsity girls)
The girls game started off with Addison scoring the first six points of the game. As a matter of fact, Sulligent was held scoreless in the entire first period. The Lady Dawgs dominated every aspect of the game and led 16-7 at the half. It could have been much worse, but Addison had trouble with their free throw shooting. Callie Crider, Macey Butler and Savannah Manley dominated the boards.
The second half was more of the same. Addison outscored the Devils 12-5 in the third to take a 28-12 lead into the fourth quarter. The Lady Dawgs did pretty much what they wanted by out rebounding, out shooting and out hustling the Lady Devils and pulling away to win it 38-23 to remain undefeated at 5-0.
The unofficial stats were Callie Crider with 14 points and eight rebounds. Macey Butler had two points and seven rebounds. Bracey Rodgers had six points and four rebounds while Savannah Manley had five points and six rebounds.
Head Coach Frank Graham said, “I am pleased with the outcome but not how we got there. We didn’t do the little things we need to do. We missed free throws and didn’t execute when we needed too. The win puts us at 2-0 in region and gives us something to build on.”
Sulligent 71 – Addison 63 (varsity boys)
The second game was a back and forth affair between the 4-0 Bulldogs and the 4-1 Blue Devils. Addison and Sulligent both started off wanting to run and Sulligent got out to a 14-11 first period lead. Sulligent continued to lead the Dawgs by outscoring Addison 18-14 in the second period. Sulligent was led by senior Neil Strickland in the first half as he grabbed six rebounds and had 10 points. The Dawgs were led by Logan “Baby Shaq” Wilkins who dominated inside by scoring eight points, grabbing three steals and pulling down four rebounds. The half ended with Sulligent leading 32-25.
The third period saw Addison take command by playing pressure defense and finally stopping the Blue Devil cutters. There were many uncontested layups in the first half as the Blue Devils constantly found the player cutting to the basket for an easy score, but the Dawgs outscored the Devils 16-8 in the third period. Addison point guard Eli “Curly” Howse constantly found the open man for the easy basket as he turned in 4 assists in the period.
The fourth period began with Addison leading 41-40 and was a tale of momentum swings. The Bulldog faithful, a packed house, cheered the Dawgs onto a quick run that had Addison leading by 10 points with 7:01 to go. Three straight technical fouls on the Blue Devils players and bench led to the Dawgs pulling ahead but just when it seemed like Addison would run away with the game, the Blue Devils showed their senior leadership. They played five seniors in the six-man rotation.
A quick steal led to a Devil layup and then an apparent ankle injury to Logan “Baby Shaq” Wilkins took him out of the game. The Devils then went on a quick 10-0 run which put them up 58-53. The Dawgs never quit but they had no answer for Senior Elijah Cockerham. Cockerham constantly drove to the basket and made several layups and free throws. Cockerham finished with 20 points and six rebounds.
Addison ended up losing 71-63 and the difference was foul shooting. The bulldogs are usually a good foul shooting team but left at least 10-12 points on the floor by missing free throws. Addison dropped to 4-1 while the Blue Devils improve to 5-1.
Blue Devil Head Coach Jerod Dunavant said, “The kids got down by 10, but they have bought into the team concept and never quit. We stress that you don’t play the scoreboard you play the next possession. Couldn’t be prouder of them.”
Addison Head Coach Ben Mastin, who is possibly the youngest varsity head coach in the State of Alabama at the tender age of 22, said, “I probably should have called a timeout when they went on that run. It hurt us when Wilkins went down, but we are a young team and will learn from this experience.”
Final unofficial stats: Logan Wilkins had 21 points, six rebounds, three steals and an assist. Kannon Hiller had 22 points, three rebounds and three steals. Eli “Curly” Howse had six points, five rebounds and 6 assists.
Addison will travel to Falkville on Tuesday.
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