Pelham girls dominate Spain Park; Jags return favor in boys area game

Spain Park used an effective game in the paint and some hot shooting from the arc to open a double-digit halftime lead over the Pelham Panthers and cruised to the Class 6A boys’ basketball area win Thursday night, 74-48.

“We haven’t been shooting well,” Spain Park head coach Brian Moon said. “We finally shot well tonight.”

The Panthers kept it close in the first quarter, trailing just 18-14, but Spain Park increased the lead to 35-25 at the half, despite the Panthers hitting three free throws at the end of the second quarter.

The Jags pulled away in the third quarter, increasing the lead to 56-37, before putting the game away in the final quarter.

Pelham head coach Joel Floyd said it was his team’s game plan to shut the Jags down inside, but some accurate outside shooting forced the Panthers to change schemes defensively.

“We did some things we wanted to, but they made shots,” Floyd said. “Our whole goal was to slow them down inside, but that’s hard to do when at one point they were 5-of-5 from the three-point line.”

Offensively for the Jags, Jake Drum had a game-high 16 points, while Matthew Bowerman finished with 13 points. Drum also had seven rebounds in the win.

For Pelham (4-5), Tyler Minyard had a team-high 12 points, including a perfect 7-of-7 effort from the free-throw line.

Tanner Rice, who fouled out, finished with eight points and 10 rebounds, while Graham Reilly finished with seven points.

GIRLS

The Pelham Lady Panthers held the Spain Park Jaguars to just 17 points Thursday night to take the area victory, 49-17.

The Panthers opened an early 12-3 lead over the Jags, and never looked back.

“We played well tonight,” Pelham head coach Lucas McDonald said. “We played with a lot of energy.”

The Panthers’ high-energy kept the Jags subdued all night, helping force turnovers and allowing Spain Park to score just three points in the opening quarter, five in the second, three in the third and six in the final quarter.

“That’s key to us,” McDonald said of his team’s defensive play.

Toni Wellborn led the Panthers with a game-high nine points, followed by Erin Whitman and Ally Slaughter with eight points apiece. Sydney Days finished with seven points.

For Spain Park, Melanie Harris had a team-high eight points, while Kathryn Boswell finished with four.