PREP BASKETBALL: Hanceville handles Ashville 85-60, Lady Bulldogs fall 39-34

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Hanceville’s Brayden Harris finished with 18 points in the Bulldogs’ 85-60 win over Ashville Friday night. (Sammy Confer/The Cullman Tribune)

HANCEVILLE, Ala. – It was a battle of the Bulldogs on homecoming night at Lane Horton Gymnasium as Hanceville faced off against Ashville in their final area games of the season. Hanceville ended up splitting their games against Ashville. Hanceville’s varsity girls held the lead after three quarters, but a huge push by Ashville in the final frame allowed them to get past Hanceville 39-34. In the boys’ game, Hanceville scored early and often on its way to an 85-60 win over Ashville.

Ashville 39 – Hanceville 34 (Varsity Girls)

Katelyn Boyd knocked down a jumper for Hanceville’s first points of the game. Ashville hit a long-range shot for their first points of the contest with 3:16 left to go in the first quarter, but MaKenzie Twilley converted her and-one opportunity to give Hanceville a 5-3 lead late in the quarter. Five straight points by Savana McAnnally pushed their lead to 10-3, and Boyd drilled a trey to give Hanceville a 13-6 lead going into the second period.

It didn’t take long for Hanceville to add onto their lead as Aaliyah Twitty scored the first six points of the quarter as that made it 19-6, but five straight points by Ashville cut it to 19-11. Mattie Keith knocked down a three to make it 22-11 and later on, a basket down low by Alex Twitty saw Hanceville take a 24-14 lead into the locker room.

A jumper by Alex Twitty pushed Hanceville’s lead to 26-14, but Ashville went on a run as six straight points cut it to 26-20. A pair of Kate Sterling free throws increased Hanceville’s lead to 30-22 with less than a minute to go in the quarter, but a pair of free throws by Ashville made it a 30-24 game going into the final period.

Ashville started the final period on fire as they scored the first 11 points of the quarter to grab a 35-30 lead. McAnnally put in a shot with a little over three minutes to go in the game to make it a three-point game, and with less than a minute to go in the contest, Aaliyah Twitty put in a short jumper to keep it a three-point game at 37-34. However, Ashville hit a late basket to help seal the 39-34 win over Hanceville.

Aaliyah Twitty led the way for Hanceville (4-18, 1-5) with eight points. McAnnally added seven points and Boyd ended up with five points.

Hanceville 85 – Ashville 60 (Varsity Boys)

Braxton Broad knocked down a pair of free throws for Hanceville’s first points of the game, but Ashville hit a trey to give them a 3-2 lead. Carson Garrett hit a free throw, then followed that up with a basket down low. Zach Campbell hit a layup, then Brayden Harris hit a long-range shot to give Hanceville a 10-3 with less than five minutes to go in the opening period. Ashville cut it to 11-7 late in the first period, but Hanceville went on a big run to end the quarter. Noah Jones scored five straight points and A.J. Wood hit a long-range shot to make it 19-7. Jones hit a long three before the buzzer to push their lead to 22-7 going into the second period.

A pair of baskets by Logan Quick and a pair of Konnor Helms free throws gave Hanceville a 28-9 lead. Baskets by Campbell and Garrett pushed their lead to 32-12, then later on, a pair of Quick treys made it 40-17. Ashville, though, went on an enormous run to get back in the game as they scored 15 straight points to cut it to 40-32. Garrett and Harris each hit a basket late in the period to make it a 44-32 game at the half. Cierra Merriweather was named the 2022/2023 homecoming queen during homecoming festivities at halftime.

Hanceville started out the third period red-hot from behind the three-point line. Calvert hit consecutive treys and Broad hit one of his own to make it 53-32, then Harris hit a trio of threes to push their lead to 64-36. A layup by Jones made it 66-36, then later on, Helms added a three and Calvert hit a pair from the line as Hanceville took a commanding 71-44 lead into the final period. The fourth quarter was more of the same as Hanceville kept Ashville at arm’s length the rest of the way as they would go on to take the game, 85-60.

Harris led the way for Hanceville (17-6, 4-2) with 18 points. Quick added 16 points. Jones and Calvert each ended up with 10 points, while Helms, Broad and Garrett each added seven points.

Hanceville will now look ahead to the county tournament next week. Their JV boys will take on Good Hope Saturday at 6 p.m. The Lady Bulldogs will face Cold Springs Monday night at 6:15 p.m. and the varsity Bulldogs will play Cold Springs Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m.

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