First Presbyterian Christian Academy boys basketball team left it all out on the floor Saturday at Mercer University in the Georgia Independent School Association Class AA state title game against Memorial Day.
But foul trouble plagued the Highlanders and the Matadors sank 46 free throws to win the title in overtime 65-60.
Highlanders Herbert Roberts, Chris Guilfo, Domonique Kirkley and Tevin Womack all fouled out of the game.
The Matadors keyed in on Roberts, who scored 26 points in the semifinal game against Griffin. Roberts was held to 10 points against the Matadors before fouling out with 1:45 left in regulation.
Highlander coach Ernie Walthour brought in D’Angelo Streeter and eighth grader George Mitchell. Streeter did his best, chipping in 13 points, and the Highlanders looked to the inside, finding Ahmad Muhammad who added 14 points in the effort. But it wasn’t enough to overcome the point advantage Memorial Day gained at the charity line.
“They won the ball game,” Walthour said. “I want to thank Memorial Day, they played a good game.”
Walthour said his younger players did well and held their own after his starters fouled out. He said the experience of playing a championship game in a large venue will help his team be ready, should they be fortunate enough to make another state run next year.
“They really held their own and I’m very proud of the entire team,” Walthour said. “We had a real good season. I could not have done it without my coaching staff, David Linderman, Antonique Mathis and Reginald Castille. We let the kids know we really appreciated all they’ve done in the last couple of months especially the outgoing seniors for what they helped us accomplish. We will use the off season to get ready and hopefully come back next year and get the state championship.”
The Highlanders finished the season 14-6 overall and 8-2 in GISA region 2-AA.