Turner County’s Demarcus Daniels throws down a dunk during Friday night’s Southwest Georgia Showcase at Darton. (email@example.com)
ALBANY — Thomasville’s Trey Gosier scored 19 points and was named MVP of the Southwest Georgia Senior Showcase, which took a somber turn after a freak injury at halftime Friday.
Gosier, who announced after the all-star game he would attend Albany State next season, led the Southwest Georgia senior stars to an 83-64 win against the Albany stars, but most of the focus and thoughts of the players were on Turner Job Corps’ Gerald Williams, who suffered a severe leg injury during the slam dunk contest at half.
Williams, who advanced to the finals of the slam dunk contest against Calhoun County’s Vincent Powell, fell on his final dunk attempt after his leg gave way. Williams was attended to on the floor of the Darton College gymnasium for nearly 30 minutes and was eventually carted off. Webster County head coach Keeyon Battle, who coached the SW Georgia stars to the victory, said Williams likely suffered a compound fracture to his leg.
The second half was shortened to one 12-minute quarter with a running clock to speed the game along after Williams’ injury at halftime.
“After the half, nobody wanted to play anymore,” Gosier said.
Following a fast-paced first-half that saw the Albany stars jump out to a double-digit lead — only to see the SW Georgia stars take a 45-38 advantage at halftime — there was little defense in the second half. With 30 seconds left — and after several players inexplicably jumped off their seats on the bench during game action to shoot 3s — nearly every player ran on the court to play, forcing the game to be called.
Gosier was still glad he got the opportunity to compete with so many stars.
“It feels great to play with that talent,” said Gosier, a talented point guard from Thomasville. “It just really prepared me for college. It showed me how the point has to manage all that talent and get everybody the ball.”
Gosier’s Thomasville teammate, 6-foot-8 center Willie Clayton, added 15 points in the win. The Albany stars were led by Monroe’s Bamba Dioum, who finished with 18 points, hitting five 3s in the loss. Turner County’s Demarcus Daniels had eight points, including several powerful dunks, all in the first half.
Early County’s Ladonis Yarbrough won the boys’ 3-point shooting contest, 5-4, over Dioum. Powell won the dunk contest by default after Williams was injured, although both scored a perfect 50 earlier to tie and send the contest to a tiebreaker. Powell dunked over Crisp County’s 6-foot-2 D.J. Jackson before Williams leaped over Thomasville’s 6’8 Clayton to force a dunk-off that ended with his injury.
SW GEORGIA ALL-STAR GIRLS 58, ALBANY ALL-STARS 57: Lee County’s Daquenna Moore was named the game’s MVP after scoring 14 points and hitting some clutch free throws late.
Moore hit 5-of-6 free throws down the stretch to help overcome a fourth-quarter deficit. Westover’s DyTiesha Dunson led all players with 20 points in the loss for the Albany stars. Chastity Mullins scored six for the Albany team.
Moore said her SW Georgia team didn’t have any drawn-up sets, but still managed to pull out the win.
“They had plays,” Moore said. “We didn’t. We just went out there and played.”
One thing that wasn’t showcased was free throw shooting. The SW Georgia stars went 22-for-37 from the foul line while the Albany stars were 16-for-29. Moore went 8-of-15 from the line but hit them when they mattered.
“Probably because the season has been out a little while and most of us (were rusty),” Moore said of the free throw troubles.
Dunson scored the final seven points of the game for Albany, but she missed two free throws with 34 seconds left and it was too little, too late. The real killer for the Albany team was a 6:30 scoreless stretch late in the third quarter and early in the fourth. Monroe’s Sheniqua Young buried a three with 1:22 left in the third to take a 45-42 lead, but the Albany stars didn’t score again until Dunson’s layup with 3:03 left in the game, trailing, 51-47.
Young won the girls’ 3-point shooting contest, hitting a three with one second left to beat Pelham’s Shay Reese, 2-1, in the finals.
LEE COUNTY, TERRELL ACADEMY BASEBALL PICKS UP WINS:
LEESBURG — It seems the only thing the Lee County baseball team needed to break out of its slump was a little dose of Posey.
Senior ace Jess Posey returned to the mound for the first time Friday night after breaking his toe in a dugout mishap two weeks ago at the end of the Trojans’ 4-0 start to the season. After Posey went to the DL, Lee lost four in a row but rebounded Friday with a 10-5 win against Northside, Columbus.
Posey (3-0) pitched five innings, gave up seven hits and struck out seven as Lee improved to 5-4.
UGA signee Daniel Nichols had a big game as well, going 3-for-4 with a double and his team-high fifth home run of the season. Nichols was coming off a game Tuesday against Northside, Warner Robins when he hit two homers.
Mark Fowler also had a strong night, going 2-for-3 with three runs scored, and Luke Roland hit his second homer of the year and scored three runs, while Pedro Cruz broke out of his recent slump and was 2-for-4 with an RBI.
Lee returns to action Monday at Tift County at 5:30 p.m.
TERRELL ACADEMY 9, SGA 3: The Eagles moved to 4-2 overall and 1-0 in GISA Region 3-AA play Friday with a rout of the Warriors.
Kyle Stratton had a big game on the mound and at the plate, earning the win after pitching a complete game and striking out six and allowing seven hits. Stratton also was 3-for-5 with a double and an RBI, while Caleb Waters was 3-for-4 — all three of his hits being doubles — with a run scored and two RBI, and Josh Wardrip was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI.
Van Harrell (2-for-4, RBI) led SGA.
Terrell Academy returns to action Tuesday at Brookwood.
SHERWOOD SOCCER TEAMS SPLIT WITH TIFTAREA:
TIFTON — T.J. Clay added to his team-leading 25-goal total Friday with two scores for Sherwood against Tiftarea in a 5-0 rout, pushing the Eagles’ record to a perfect 10-0-1, while Aaron Anthony also scored twice and William Orr added one. Keion Steward got the shutout in goal.
The Lady Eagles, meanwhile, lost, 2-0.
SCA’s boys will next play at Tattnall on Tuesday, while the girls next play at Terrell Academy.