The Graceville Tigers hosted the Cottondale Hornets Friday night with both teams competing to the final buzzer sounded. It was the visiting Hornets who came out on top in a lopsided victory, 63-34.
Cottondale took the first quarter by a slight edge, 10-8 with five Hornets picking up a basket while Joell Green led the Tigers with four points, going 2-for-2 from the charity stripe and adding a basket.
The usually ‘can-be-heard across the gym’ Hornet coach Chris Obert must have had some powerful, soft-spoken words at the quarter break. The Hornets went into a different offensive gear in the second quarter and posted 20 points, with seven points coming from Amari Banks, five from Dayron Garrett and four each from Cameron Brooks and Tykeece Bryant. Graceville answered with 10 points with Joell Green notching four of those and Sam Wesley nailing a three. At the half, it was a 30-18 game Cottondale’s way.
Second-year coach Justin Miles had many years as a player with his coaches letting teams know the game was just half over when they went into the locker room. His Tigers came out and played as if the slate had been wiped clean. The third quarter went to Graceville 11-10 with Xavian Sorey leading the way with four points. Amari Banks continued his scoring in the third with a basket and a perfect 2-for-2 from the line.
The fourth quarter was all Hornets with the Tigers running out of steam. Dayron Garrett put up eight points, while Amari Banks was steady on the night with six points. Dominique Pittman added five with Cameron Brooks putting up four points. For Graceville, they had three Tigers adding points.
Leading the Graceville Tigers in scoring was Xavian Sorey with 12 points, followed by Joell Green with 10 points. Andre Brown had six points on the night.
For Cottondale, it was Amari Banks with 19 points, followed by Dayron Garrett with 16 points. Also in double digits was Cameron Brooks with 10 points, followed by Dominique Pittman with nine points on the night.