Rivalry week got off to a big start for the Long County Blue Tide basketball teams on Tuesday, December 3. The teams traveled to Darien to face off against the McIntosh County Academy Buccaneers and both teams came away with wins. The Lady Tide got their first win, defeating MCA 39-31, while the boys got back on track with a 51-46 win.
The Lady Blue Tide started off their season with two two-point losses in the final seconds, falling to 5A opponents New Hampstead and South Effingham. They followed those up with losses to Montgomery County and Jeff Davis in the Hugh McBride Classic in Hazlehurst over Thanksgiving break. It was time they turned things around and did just that on Tuesday.
The game started off close, like most of the Lady Tide’s games so far. They led 10-8 at the end of the first quarter with junior Tiniya Smith scoring five points and senior Breyahn Maddox going 3-4 from the free throw line. The Lady Buccaneers, however, all but shut down the Lady Tide in the second quarter as they led 16-15 going into halftime.
The third quarter was back-and-forth as the score was tied at 26 going into the final period. Sophomore Makayla Raimer scored her first buckets of the night in the quarter, hitting two shots and scoring four points. The fourth quarter belonged to the Lady Tide as they dominated 13-5.
Freshman Jada Young had a great showing in the fourth, going 4-4 from the free throw line and scoring the final four points of the game for the Tide as they moved to 1-4 with a 39-31 win. Young finished the night leading with nine points, six in the fourth quarter, and seven rebounds.
The boys were looking to bounce back from their first loss of the year after they fell to Jeff Davis in the Hugh McBride Classic. They defeated Ware County in the Classic 74-40 but lost to the Yellow Jackets 64-58. Their game against MCA was closer than they expected, but they were able to pull out the win and move to 4-1.
It was a low-scoring affair through the first two quarters as the Blue Tide only were able to score 17 points and held a slim lead going into halftime. However, the third quarter completely belonged to the Blue Tide.
They scored 20 points in the third quarter alone with senior Trajan Weatherspoon coming off the bench again and scoring five points. Tostadas Pouncey hit a big three and Donovan Sykes scored four of his team-leading 12 points in the quarter.
It was again a close fourth quarter, but the Tide were just too much for the Buccaneers as they pulled out a 51-46 win. Sykes led with 12 points while Adison Russell added eight points, including a big three-pointer in the second quarter.
The Blue Tide teams will host rival Wayne County on Friday, December 6. The Lady Yellow Jackets are 5-0 on the year while the boys are 3-2.