PREP BASKETBALL: Warriors, Lady Warriors split area tilts with Lawrence County

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West Point’s Kobe Bowers (24) posted 20 points in the Warriors’ 84-69 win over Lawrence County Tuesday night. (Nick Griffin/The Cullman Tribune)

WEST POINT, Ala. – Both the Warriors and Lady Warriors hosted Lawrence County for a pair of area matchups but only one of the West Point squads was able to finish the night with a win. The Lady Warriors weren’t able to overcome some of their struggles on the defensive end of the floor and fell to Lawrence County 68-57, but the Warriors were able outpace the Red Devils with an explosive offensive performance that led to an 84-69 win.

Lawrence County 68 – West Point 57 (varsity girls)

Braelee Quinn got things going for West Point early in the first, scoring the first seven points of the game for the Lady Warriors before Lexi Shadix knocked down a three-pointer to make it a 10-5 game. Quinn converted a three-point play at the free throw line to put West Point on top 14-8 with a minute remaining in the opening period, but Lawrence County managed to trim the lead all the way down to 14-12 by the start of the second.

The run continued for the Lady Red Devils as they pulled ahead 17-14 early in the second but Shadix stopped the run with a basket inside to make it a 2-point game. Shadox added another three to cut the lead to 23-19 with five minutes to play in the second quarter but seven unanswered points from Lawrence County made it a 30-19 game with only a couple of minutes to play in the half. A Kaylee Faulkner steal turned into an easy two points for Shadix on the other end to cut the lead to eight with a minute remaining in the period, but the Lady Red Devils were able to build a 36-24 advantage by the halftime break.

Lawrence County added to its lead early in the third and the run continued until a pair of free throws from Summer Mendoza made it a 46-28 game midway through the third. Back to back Shadix jumpers cut the lead to 46-32 and Quinn kept the momentum going with a three-pointer to make it an 11-point game with just under two minutes to play in the quarter. Another Shadix three made it a 10-point game and a steal by Bethany Minck led to an easy bucket for Ryleigh Jones that made it 50-42. However, the Lady Red Devils were able to get back in front by 10 at 52-42 going into the fourth quarter.

A Minck basket followed by Quinn’s third trey of the game trimmed the lead to 54-47 at one point and Faulkner later laid one in to hold the lead to seven midway through the fourth. Unfortunately, the Lady Warriors weren’t able to get enough stops late in the game to complete the comeback and Lawrence County pulled away to win it 68-57.

Shadix led West Point with 30 points in the loss, followed by Quinn with 16.

West Point 84 – Lawrence County – 69 (varsity boys)

After falling behind 5-2 at the start of the opening period, Carter Thornton laid one in and Will Cochran and Kobe Bowers each buried three-point shots to tie the game at 11 midway through the first. A Thornton jumper put the Warriors in front 13-11 and they never gave the lead back to the Red Devils. Bowers and Thornton each netted three-pointers to make it a 19-11 game and Bowers drilled his third long ball of the first quarter to stretch the lead to 11. Cochran and Logan Selby each scored inside the paint to make it 26-13 late in the quarter and West Point went into the second leading Lawrence County 26-14.

Cade Simmons got his name in the scoring column with a three-pointer to start the second quarter and back to back baskets from Selby extended the lead to 33-21 with five minutes remaining in the half. Back to back Cochran buckets kept West Point in front by 10 but the Red Devils were able to chip away at the lead and make it a 5-point game late in the period. Cochran drilled a fadeaway jumper to build the lead back up to seven and Aubry Cleghorn knocked down a three to make it a 43-36 game going into the half.

Bowers and Cleghorn exchanged buckets early in the third to keep the Warriors ahead by 11 but the offense began to slow down for West Point and the Red Devils managed to cut the lead to 58-52 late in the third and went into the final frame trailing just 59-54.

Cochran scored at the rim and Jonathan Fell netted a pair of free throws to keep the Warriors in front by five and a Selby jumper made it a 67-60 game with six minutes to play. Cochran finished an and-one play at the line to build the lead to eight and Bowers drilled his fourth triple of the night to make it 74-64 midway through the fourth. A pair of Cleghorn free throws and another Bowers bucket stretched the lead to 13 with three minutes remaining and put the game all but out of reach for Lawrence County. Bowers added his fifth three-pointer late in the fourth to seal the deal and the Warriors pulled away to take the area win 84-69.

Cochran led West Point with 23 points in the win, followed by Bowers with 20, Cleghorn with 15, Thornton with 11 and Selby with eight. The Warriors and Lady Warriors will be hitting the road Friday for another important area showdown at Russellville.

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