PREP BASKETBALL: West Point falls short against Priceville in Christmas Tournament finals

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West Point’s Jay Lamar led the Warriors with 19 points in their 76-60 loss to Priceville Wednesday. (Nick Griffin/The Cullman Tribune)

WEST POINT, Ala. – The West Point Warriors were back home at Jim Boyd Gymnasium to compete in their Christmas Tournament Championship Game Wednesday afternoon but unfortunately for the home crowd, the Priceville Bulldogs were the ones who left with this year’s trophy. The Warriors trailed by 23 at one point in the second half but they rallied in the fourth quarter to cut the lead down to eight with two minutes to play. However, Priceville was able to finish strong and pull away with a 76-60 win.

Jay Lamar scored the first nine points of the game for West Point, all on three-pointers, to tie the score at 9 midway through the first quarter. A run from the Bulldogs put them ahead 16-9 but Andrew Lynn knocked down a three of his own to cut the lead to four. A pair of Kolten Perry free throws and another three-pointer from Lynn cut the Priceville lead to 19-17 at the end of the first quarter.

The second quarter was one that the Warriors would like to forget. The Bulldogs scored the first 17 points of the period to take a commanding, 36-17 lead with three minutes to play in the half but a basket by Lamar finally stopped the run. However, West Point still went into the locker room trailing the Bulldogs 39-19 at halftime.

Another basket from Lamar made it a 42-21 game early in the third quarter and Ashton Rodgers laid one in and drilled a three-pointer to cut the lead to 44-27. Lynn and Sam Wheeler each chipped away at the lead from the free throw line and Lamar buried another three in the final moments of the third to make it 51-35 going into the fourth quarter.

The Warriors got hot from three-point range in the final period, starting with back to back treys Lynn and Perry that made it a 58-41 game. Lamar added another three later in the quarter to trim the lead to 13 and back to back baskets from Perry made it 58-49 midway through the fourth. Lynn and Wheeler each hit from three-point range again to cut the lead to 63-55 with two minutes remaining in the game but West Point couldn’t get any closer than that. Perry and Lynn each added to their point totals in the final minute but couldn’t keep pace with Priceville. The Bulldogs held on to defeat the Warriors 76-60 and claim this year’s West Point Christmas Tournament title.

Lamar led the way for West Point with 19 points in the loss. Lynn finished with 16 and Perry added 11. The Warriors will face Priceville at home again Monday night.

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