PREP BASKETBALL: Vinemont Eagles, Lady Eagles capture St. Bernard Christmas Tournament titles; Friday scoring recap

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Both the Vinemont Eagles and Lady Eagles were winners at the 10th annual St. Bernard Christmas Tournament Friday night. (Nick Griffin for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – Both the Vinemont Eagles and Lady Eagles were in Friday night’s championship games at this year’s St. Bernard Christmas Tournament and they each went home with first place finishes. The Lady Eagles collected their hardware first with a 48-37 win over JB Pennington and the Eagles followed them a 46-42 win over St. Bernard in the nightcap.

Vinemont 48 – JB Pennington 37 (varsity girls)

Back to back three-point baskets gave the Lady Tigers an early 6-2 lead but Vinemont responded quickly and a three, followed by a layup, from Bailey Preiss cut the lead to 8-7 with three minutes to play in the opening quarter. Kanasta Daniel scored late in the first to put the Lady Eagles in front 11-8 and they maintained a 13-12 advantage going into the second quarter.

Madysen Hacker scored to keep Vinemont ahead 15-14 early in the second and another Preiss basket stretched the lead to 17-14 midway through the period but JB Pennington finished the half on a 10-4 scoring run to take a 24-21 lead into the locker room at the break. The Lady Eagles put together a scoring run of their own early in the second half and another basket from Hacker gave them a 26-24 lead early in the third.

A three-pointer from Preiss made it 29-24 at the five-minute mark of the quarter but the Lady Tigers managed to knot things up at 29 later in the third. Berkley Gable scored off of a Preiss steal to go up 32-29 and started a big scoring run for Vinemont that was capped off by a thre-pointer from Daniel that made it a 43-34 game by the opening minutes of the fourth quarter.

Another bucket from Hacker put the Lady Eagles on top 48-34 with just over two minutes to play and Vinemont held on to win the game and the tournament 48-37.

Preiss led the Lady Eagles with 20 points in the win, followed by Hacker with 14 and Gable with seven. Vinemont will get some time off over the holidays before returning home to host Good Hope Jan. 3.

Vinemont 46 – St. Bernard 42 (varsity boys)

Neither team got off to a fast start offensively in this one with the first basket coming from Vinemont’s Jordan Hall nearly four minutes into the game. The Eagles began to build an early lead after that but a three from Jose Zatarain trimmed the lead to 6-5 midway through the first quarter. Tanner Brown converted an and-one play at the free throw line late in the first to give Vinemont a 9-5 lead and the Eagles maintained an 11-7 advantage going into the second.

A basket from Will Rhodes made it 15-7 early in the second quarter and a floater from Collin Teichmiller stretched the lead to 19-9 midway through the period. Clay Rogers knocked down a jumper to make it 22-11 with under a minute to play in the second and Vinemont went into the half with a 24-11 lead over the Saints.

St. Bernard began to chip away in the third quarter. A bucket from Caleb Guthery cut the lead to 26-15 at the five-minute mark of the third and a basket from John Rose made it 26-17midway through the quarter. An and-one play from Guthery made it an 8-point game late in the third but the Eagles ended the quarter on a 9-2 run and took a 37-22 lead into the final frame.

Vinemont was in control for most of the fourth quarter, holding onto a 9-point lead with four minutes to play but the Saints began clawing back late in the game. A three-pointer from Rose and a jumper from Guthery cut the lead to 44-38 with just over a minute to play and another score from Rose made it a 4-point game with under a minute to play. The late push was held up after Katch Johnson knocked down a pair of free throws for the Eagles with 27 seconds to play and Vinemont held on to win it over St. Bernard 46-42.

Johnson led the Eagles with 16 points in the win, followed by Rogers with 10 and Hall with six. Rose led the way for the Saints with 18 points, Guthery followed him with 10 and Zatarain finished with five.

Other Friday scores:

West Point 69 – Decatur 28 (varsity girls)

Cold Springs 54 – GW Long 49 (varsity girls)

Holly Pond 30 – Randolph 17 (varsity girls)

Holly Pond 58 – Randolph 33 (varsity boys)

Addison 49 – Sumiton Christian 29 (varsity girls)

Sumiton Christian 68 – Addison 56 (varsity boys)

St. Bernard 43 – Athens Bible 30 (varsity girls)

Falkville 63 – Meek 38 (varsity girls)

Meek 59 – Falkville 54 (varsity boys)

Cullman 75 – Huffman 24 (varsity girls)

Oneonta 60 – Cullman 54 (varsity boys)

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