Turnovers and second half power outage doom Wildcats against Macon County
Published 9:13 pm Saturday, December 11, 2021
AMERICUS – After defeating the Central Talbotton Hawks 61-44 the night before, the Schley County Wildcats (SCHS) hit the hardwood at the GSW Storm Dome on Saturday, December 11, with hopes of increasing their winning streak to three games with a win over Region 5A-Public opponent Macon County (MCH). Unfortunately for the Wildcats, they could only score 10 points in the second half and struggled to handle the full-court defensive pressure of the Bulldogs. These two factors would eventually lead to a 58-42 defeat for the Wildcats at the hands of MCH.
“We couldn’t get into our secondary offensive set and I’ll take partial blame on that,” SCHS Head Coach Ernest Scott said. “We tried to run motion. We were being denied on that. Our wheel set, some of the kids didn’t know. I think their (MCH) length bothered some of the guards that we have, but we are a young team. We are starting three freshmen, one sophomore and one senior. It’s a learning experience for them. We’ll just go back to work and get ready for Taylor County on Tuesday.”
JaLewis Solomon led the Wildcats in scoring with 11 points and nine of his points came from three three-pointers. Trypp Lumpkin scored 10 points and Zayden Walker chipped in six points in the losing cause.
The Wildcats jumped out to an 8-3 lead early in the game and would later take a 14-7 lead on a three-pointer by Lumpkin. However, early in the second quarter, DaQuan Brown brought MCH to within three at 16-13 on a short jumper from the top of the key.
The Bulldogs began to use a half-court trap and it forced the Wildcats’ into committing turnovers, which in turn led to points for MCH. However, SCHS managed to weather the storm, as Tyrese Cook scored and completed a three-point play to tie the game at 23-23.
The Wildcats continued to struggle with turnovers against the press of MCH, but managed to keep pace, as both teams traded baskets in the waning minutes of the first half. Then with about 40 seconds left, Solomon drained a three-pointer to tie the game at 32-32, which ended up being the score at halftime.
Over the first five minutes of the third quarter, MCH outscored the Wildcats 6-3, but Solomon drilled another three-pointer to tie the score at 38-38. During this period of the game, both teams were fighting extremely hard and both teams committed numerous turnovers as a result of tenacious defensive pressure. However, in the waning minutes of the third quarter, Cameron Barnes was able to hit one of two free throws to give SCHS a 39-38 lead going into the final quarter.
However, the Bulldogs took over in the fourth quarter by going on a 14-0 run. This was the result of hot shooting by MCH and cold shooting from the field by the Wildcats. In fact, SCHS did not score a point in the fourth quarter until Jordan Hudson made one of two foul shots with a little over three minutes left to play.
Another factor in the Wildcats’ fourth quarter collapse was their inability to handle the Bulldogs’ defensive pressure. This in turn caused SCHS to commit more turnovers, which resulted in points for MCH. As a result, the Wildcats would go on to lose to the Bulldogs 58-42.
The Bulldogs had three players score in double figures. Brown led all scorers with 15 points, Frankie Raines Jr. had 14 and Landon Austin chipped in 13 points for MCH in the winning cause.
The Wildcats are now 3-3 overall on the season and are currently 2-1 in Region 5A-Public competition. They will try to get back on the winning track when they face Taylor County in another region match up in Butler on Tuesday, December 14. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.