Hoover holds off Pelham

FROM STAFF REPORTS

Brannon DeFore scored 21 points and Eric Dansby added 14 as Class 6A No. 5-ranked Hoover withstood a second half rally by Pelham to beat the Panthers, 64-51, in Alabama High School Athletic Association Class 6A, Area 10 action Jan. 13.

The Bucs led 35-23 early in the second half before the Panthers used a 12-4 run to trim the margin to four points at 39-35 with 1:10 remaining in the third quarter. Hoover (20-3, 2-0) then scored the next seven points to take a 46-35 lead with 6:59 to play in the fourth quarter.

Pelham (12-7, 1-1) cut the Bucs’ lead to six at 51-45 with 2:36 remaining as senior Xavier Lacey hit a short jumper in the lane.  Lacey finished with 21 points for the Panthers as he hit 10-of-13 field goals, including his first seven shots in the game.  Justin Brooks added 12 points for the Panthers.

Hoover helped seal the victory by hitting six of its final seven free throws.  The Bucs shot 55 percent (24-of-44) from the floor and hit 67 percent (14-of-21) in the first half.

The Panthers started slowly as Hoover jumped out to a 7-0 lead.  Dansby scored seven of the Bucs’ first nine points.  Hoover built its largest lead of the game midway through the second period as it capped a 12-2 run with a DeFore basket to take a 30-13 lead, its largest of the game.

But Pelham responded with a 7-0 run of its own, all scored by Lacey.  The Bucs took a 32-23 lead into the locker room at halftime.

GIRLS

The Pelham High School girls’ basketball team fell to Hoover 78-19 in an Alabama High School Athletic Association Class 6A, Area 10 contest Jan. 13.

Erin Whitman, Ashley Kate Kepler and Emily Jackson led the Panthers (14-4 overall, 0-2 in Class 6A, Area 10) with five points each.