The Miller Grove Wolverines used a 12-0 run in the second quarter to pull away from the Stephenson Jaguars on the way to a 50-33 Region 6-4A win at Miller Grove between the two teams previously tied for third in the standings.
Leading 12-8 with 7:10 to play in the first half the run got started on a three-pointer by Xavier Lewis. Nicholas Burton followed with two free throws and an offensive put back to push the lead to double digits at 19-18.
Kory Young’s drive and Taison Mathis’ one for two at the free-throw line and a steal for a bucket to make it 24-8 with 2:48 to play in the first half. Whitmire gave Stephenson just its second basket from the field in the game as the Jaguars hit just two of 15 shot attempts in the first half. Stephenson was 7 of 10 from the free-throw line.
Amore’ Randolph’s three-pointer and Elgin Wingard III’s steal and dunk sent Miller Grove to the half up 29-12.
Stephenson’s shooting struggles continue in the third quarter hitting just two of 12 from the field (4-27) over the first three quarters.
Young made an old fashioned three-point play with 3:37 left in third period made it a 39-17 lead for the Wolverines. Stephenson was six of eight from the line in the final 3:21 of third period but could only close the gap to 39-23 by the end of third quarter.
Randolph hit a pair of free throws with 1:33 to play to give Miller Grove (10-7, 6-2) its biggest lead of the game at 50-28. Benton Allen’s three pointer and Javonte Stanford’s put back both came in the final minute of play to make the final of 50-33.
Stephenson (10-7, 5-3) hit three field goals in the fourth quarter (3-15) to finish 7 of 42 from the field (16.7 percent) and combined with 23 turnovers proved costly in a key region loss.
Taison Mathis led the way for Miller Grove with 11 points while Marion Hopkins added 9 points and 5 rebounds. Elgin Wingard III put in seven points and grabbed 9 rebounds for the Wolverines.
Stephenson got 11 points from Cory Whitmire and Christian Thompson pulled down eight rebounds as the Jaguars out-rebounded the Wolverines 28-27.
(G) Stephenson 35, Miller Grove 31
The Stephenson Lady Jaguars took the lead for good at 5-4 with 4:20 left in the first quarter on a free-throw by Natalia Gooden on the way to a Region 6-4A win over the Miller Grove Lady Wolverines.
Natalia Gooden hit one of two free throws to break a 4-4 deadlock in the first quarter as the Lady Jaguars (7-7, 4-2) took the lead for good against Miller Grove (4-10, 2-6).
Gooden would score six points in the second quarter and Stephenson took a 20-12 lead at the half.
Tehya Brewer’s basket to open the second half gave Stephenson its largest lead of the night at 22-12 but Miller Grove would not go away.
Arieyona Christian scored six points in a two-minute span as the Lady Wolverines pulled within four twice, the last at 24-20 with 5:08 left in the third quarter.
Sabrina Russell’s offensive rebound off a free throw miss by Jamiyah Barray pushed the lead out to 28-20.
Miller Grove came right back to cut the Stephenson lead to four points at the end of the third quarter on a layup by Julisa Payne-Wright with eight seconds remaining.
Stephenson once again opened up a nine-point lead with a 5-0 run to open the fourth quarter, capped by a pair of free throws by Blezzy Abong to make it 35-26 with 3:20 to play.
Baskets by Ja’Niya Smith and Christian helped close the gap back to 35-31 with 43 seconds to play. Miller Grove had the opportunity to close the gap to just two points when a turnover occurred with under 29 seconds to play.
Jamiyah Barray led Stephenson with 9 points and 9 rebounds and Natalia Gooden added 9 points and five rebounds. Tehya Brewer finished the night with 11 rebounds.
Arieyona Christian led all scorers with 13 points for Miller Grove. Jaylen Clark who had some foul trouble during the second half finished with just five points, but grabbed 15 rebounds.