First Presbyterian Christian Academy’s basketball teams split their games with Memorial Day on Tuesday in their final home games of the season
The Highlanders won, 71-54, and the Lady ’Landers lost, 35-25. Between the girls’ and boys’ games, the senior players and cheerleader were honored.
In the girls’ game, the teams traded baskets, and FPCA stayed within reach of the Lady Matadors until late in the third quarter of play. Until then, the point difference was never more than four, due in large part to FPCA’s two outgoing seniors, Brooke Standard and Troianna Murray.
The Lady Matadors pressed hard for the remainder of the game and capitalized on late turnovers.
When the boys’ teams hit the court in Tuesday’s late game, it became apparent it would be another showdown.
During the teams’ first matchup a week ago in Savannah, the Matadors led most of the game. FPCA had to come back from a 17-point deficit to win, 73-70, in overtime.
Tuesday, FPCA had a slight 8-6 lead when the Matadors got into trouble. Highlander Ahman Muhammad drew a foul, and Memorial Day received a technical foul for unsportsmanlike conduct from one of its players.
The Highlanders started to pull away when James Phillips tossed the ball to Miguel Pineda, who drained a 3-pointer.
A few seconds later, Muhammad was back at the line, hitting both free throws.
In the second quarter, FPCA saw an eight-point lead dwindle as the Matadors methodically passed the ball and patiently waited for the best shot. At halftime, the game was tied, 31-31.
Highlander Wallace Smith had an impressive second half, starting with a 3-pointer off a quick pass by Pineda to start the third. Smith scored 20 of his 27 points in the second half and was a big reason FPCA pulled ahead and stayed there for the remainder of the game.
In the third quarter, the Matadors received another technical foul, allowing FPCA to extend the lead to 10.
FPCA kept up the tempo, and the Matadors ran out of steam. With three minutes left in regulation, Memorial Day cleared its bench and rested its starters. FPCA sank in a few more shots to solidify the lead.
The Highlanders hold a 9-0 region record and 17-2 overall mark going into the game and have clinched the top seed in next week’s region tournament. FPCA will play at 5:30 p.m. next Tuesday.
Each FPCA team has one Georgia Independent School Association Region 2-AA game remaining — tonight at Trinity Christian in Dublin.
FPCA — 17/14/24/17: 71
Top scorers — Wallace Smith 27, Miguel Pineda 17, Domonique Kirkley 13, Ahman Muhammad 7, Richard Smith 6
MD — 13/18/12/11: 54
Top scorers — A. Baker 13, D. Wright 12, M. Latson 10, K. Dukes 6, D. Montague 5, M. Cooper 4, J. Siebem 4