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Westover boys, girls edge Albany in city rivalry showdown

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

ALBANY -- Westover head coach Lewis Smith thought his girls team would be worn out after playing in a key region game one night earlier against Monroe.

Twenty-four hours later, the Lady Patriots managed to rebound for a 39-26 win over Albany High.

"To come back from a night at Monroe, where there was a lot of emotion and it was real draining... It was so hot in there," Smith said.

Neither Westover (20-3) nor Albany (14-10) came out hot Saturday, scoring just 10 points in the first quarter. The Lady Pats crept out to a 19-13 halftime lead and slowly distanced themselves from the Squaws on a night when both teams were looking ahead to more important matters.

"We came out flat and that wasn't what we needed to do as we're getting ready for the region tournament," Albany girls' coach Telly Turner said. "I hope we haven't peaked yet. It's taken time to jell."

Westover sophomore DyTiesha Dunson led all scorers with 12 points to go along with eight boards and two blocks. Latisha Williams had seven points and eight boards, helping Westover dominate inside the paint.

"We were exhausted from (Friday night vs. Monroe)," said Lady Pats senior Danielle Glover, who finished with a team-high nine rebounds. "We just tried to regroup. Next week is big for us so we we're just trying to get ready for that."

Albany was led by Jasmine Myers' 10 points, while Chasity Mullins added seven points and nine rebounds.

Albany High's regular season is done, but the Squaws will continue after a week off to prepare for the Region 1-AA tournament. Turner said the Squaws will enter the region tournament as either the No. 3 or 4 seed, needing one more win next week at home to secure a state playoff ticket.

Westover, meanwhile, still has business to take care of this week with games at Cairo Tuesday and then the big one at home against Peach County Friday. Both Westover and Peach are tied atop the Region 1-AAA standings, which will determine the host of the boys and girls region tournament.

"It was a good weekend," Smith said. "We closed it out. We've got to get ready for Cairo. The Peach (game) isn't even a concern. We've got to take care of Tuesday. We really want to finish up No. 1."

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WESTOVER BOYS 52, ALBANY 46:

The Patriots, coming off a huge win Friday night against previously unbeaten region foe Monroe, held off a late Albany rally to survive in hostile territory Saturday night.

Westover (20-3) led by as many as 14 points at the end of the third, before Albany's Barry Diamond drilled a 3-pointer with 30 seconds left to cut the lead to 59-56. Westover's Anthony Ball and Shevren Keaton hit clutch free throws down the stretch to close the deal.

Westover, which played nearly its entire bench after a draining game the night before, was led by Chris Wheeler's 13 points. Onochie Ochie added 10. Wheeler scored 11 in the second half, while Ochie scored all 10 in the final two quarters after Albany refused to go away.

The Indians (12-11) were led by Tim Pierce's 11 points, while Diamond scored 10.

Albany will open region tournament play next week as the Region 1-AA No. 3 seed gainst an opponent yet to be determined.

Westover, currently second in the Region 1-AAA standings, one game behind Monroe, travels to Cairo Tuesday.