Bradwell Institute’s basketball teams dropped their home games Tuesday to Effingham County.
The Lady Rebels, one of the strongest teams in Region 3-AAAAA, established a 29-point halftime lead while cruising to a 61-25 victory. Bradwell played the Rebels tough in the boys’ game but fell, 62-57, in overtime.
Effingham opened the game quick, led by Kyesha Lewis’ six points in the first quarter. The Tigers responded with four points from post Alize Roberts.
Trailing 17-10, the Lady Tigers showed they could play with the athletic Lady Rebels. However, Effingham’s offense unleashed a barrage, going on a couple of different scoring runs. The visitors’ stingy defense allowed only four points to the Lady Tigers in the second quarter. The Lady Rebels held a 32-14 lead at halftime.
Effingham increased its offensive firepower in the third quarter. Hitting shots, grabbing rebounds and forcing turnovers, Effingham added 21 more points to its lead in the third quarter and again held the Lady Tigers to four points.
Roberts led BI with eight points.
Bradwell (6-17 overall, 4-8 in region) will play its final home game of the regular season Friday against Groves. The Bradwell seniors will be honored.
On Saturday, Bradwell travels to Jenkins for the final region game of the season. This game originally was scheduled for last week, but was postponed due to weather.
EC — 17/15/21/8: 61
BI — 10/4/4/7: 25
Bradwell scoring — Alize Roberts 8, Akeyla Richardson 4, Selena Maines 4, Myala Wells 3, Javaughna Claridy 2, Brianna Johnson 2, Auitana Hightower 2.
Bradwell showed consistent offensive patience. It moved the ball with crisp passes, hit shots on the perimeter and cut into the lane for layups. Though Effingham showed some defensive pressure, the Tigers’ guards showed strong basketball intelligence and moved the ball through the Rebels’ press. The Tigers held a 28-25 lead at the half.
Effingham kept the game close in the second half. The Rebels tied the game, 50-50, in the final seconds of regulation, and then outscored BI, 12-7, in overtime.
Despite a strong performance, the Tigers were 13 of 31 from the free throw line against Effingham.
Senior guard Malcolm Dingle led the Tigers with 16 points. Resha Stokes finished with 14 points. Effingham’s Missouri-bound big man Jakeenan Gant, although limited by an ankle injury, had 17 of his 26 points in the last quarter and overtime.
After a tough three-game stretch, in which the Tigers went 1-2, Bradwell (13-10 overall, 9-3 in region) will play its final home game today against Groves and will face region leader Jenkins on Saturday in Savannah.
“I think it definitely helps us next week — last game would have been real nice to win because of the way the region tournament is set up with a day off between games for the (No. 1) and (No. 2) seed. It didn’t work out the way we planned and will have to go the hard road if we win the first game and play back to back,” Bradwell head coach Rhett Hellgren said.
Finishing the season against Jenkins will be tough, but it should get Hellgren’s squad mentally and physically ready for next week’s Region 3-AAAAA tournament at Richmond Hill.
“We have a tough region, and if you don’t play and do what you are supposed to do, anyone can beat you in this region,” Hellgren said.
EC — 10/15/13/12/12: 62
BI — 12/16/13/9/7: 57
Bradwell scoring — Malcolm Dingle 16, Resha Stokes 14, JaMorris Hill 9, Hubert Anderson 5, Trevon McCoy 4, Darrell Hawkins 4, Tevin Womack 3, Kendrick Harris Bennett 2.