Charging ahead: Cornerstone wins area title

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Things were not going well for the Chargers.

The Cornerstone Christian boys&8217; basketball team had lost its first six games and its two tallest players before the Christmas holidays had even begun, leaving head coach Tim Smith searching for answers.

A month later, the Chargers are area champions for a second straight year, winning 11 of their last 13 games and finishing the regular season with a respectable 11-8 record.

&8220;We went back to work over the Christmas break,&8221; Smith said. &8220;They needed to figure out what their roles were. Once they did that we started playing together again.&8221;

The Chargers put the icing on their regular-season cake Monday night with a 69-39 victory over Central Academy to claim the title.

&8220;I think we played pretty hard,&8221; Smith said. &8220;We definitely tried to play everyone during the game.&8221;

Despite taking first in the area, the Chargers will have to travel to Shelby Academy Friday to play in the tournament thanks to the Shelby Academy Lady Raiders, who took home first place in the girls&8217; division this season.

&8220;Tonight felt good,&8221; Cornerstone senior guard Dustin Shears said after Monday&8217;s victory. &8220;We started out slow this year, but this was a great way to end the regular season.&8221;

Shears led the way for CCS in his final home game, scoring a team-high 19 points. The team&8217;s only other senior, Ty Youngblood, netted 10 points in the winning effort.

&8220;I told them before the game that it had been my privilege to coach them for these two years,&8221; Smith said of his seniors. &8220;It&8217;s fun to watch them play together because they know each other so well.&8221;

The Chargers will play against the winner of the fourth-fifth seed game on Friday in the area tournament.

Chilton County 69, Pelham 45: The Panthers&8217; Steven Clark scored a team-high 14 points Monday night, but it wasn&8217;t enough as Pelham fell to Chilton County, 69-45.

Clark&8217;s teammate, Jarrod Stanbridge, added 12 points in the loss.

Vincent 55, Isabella 44: The Vincent Yellow Jackets were paced by Steven Adams, who scored 17 points, as they defeated Isabella Monday night, 55-44.

Octavious Looney added 11 points for the Jackets as Vincent moved to 9-15 on the season.

Altamont 86, Calera 59: The Calera Eagles lost to Class 2A top-ranked Altamont for a second time this season Friday night, and this time it got ugly.

The Altamont Knights outscored the Eagles, 22-5, in the third quarter and went on to win, 86-59.

Altamont&8217;s Larry Williams scored a team-high 33 points in the win and hit 4-of-5 three-pointers in the fourth quarter.

Calera head coach Brett Burdette said his team&8217;s failure to effectively guard the Knights proved to be costly.

&8220;We didn&8217;t defend well in the first half and did even worse in the second,&8221; he said.

T.J. Green was the lead scorer for the Eagles, netting 19 points while teammate Brian Watts scored 18 points in the losing effort.

With the win, Altamont claimed the Class 2A, Area 8 championship over the Eagles.

Spain Park 48, Vestavia Hills 43: The Spain Park Jaguars came back from a 40-33 deficit in the final quarter of their game against Vestavia Hills Friday night to defeat the Rebels, 48-43.

Chris Pitts led the way for the Jags in scoring, finishing with 11 points while teammate Adam Mims netted 10 in the victory.

With the win, Spain Park advanced its overall record to 17-8 on the season and 9-2 in area play.

Oak Mountain 29, Prattville 21: The Oak Mountain Eagles only needed 29 points in their matchup against Prattville Friday night.

The Eagles&8217; Tyler Gallimore netted seven points to lead the way for OMHS, which defeated the Lions, 29-21.

Thomas Nordyke and Justin Luquire netted six points each in the win, which advanced the Eagles&8217; record to 23-1 on the year.

Kingwood Christian 60, Coosa Valley 44: Jonathon Haley went 6-for-6 from the field and 2-for-2 from the free-throw line to help Kingwood defeat Coosa Valley Friday night, 60-44.

Haley finished with 15 points for the Lions (19-4) while teammate Adam Irby added 12 points in the winning effort