Evangel downs rival Hope

Published 10:18 am Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Evangel Christian's Doug Battle puts up a shot contested by Hope Christian's Cannon Fuqua in the Lightning's 61-43 win Dec. 18. (Reporter photo/Mickel Ponthieux)

By MICKEL PONTHIEUX / Sports Reporter

ALABASTER – The Evangel Christian Lightning fought off a late third-quarter rally by the Hope Christian Eagles for a 61-43 victory Dec. 18.

“It was a good win for us tonight,” said Evangel head coach Rusty Palmer. “There was good energy in the crowd and our guys fed off of that. We made it a full-court ball game and I thought that was the difference.

The Lightning took a 25-17 lead at the half, and then went on an 11-0 run in the third to claim a 40-22 advantage. Hope Christian answered with an 8-2 run to end the third to trail 42-32 headed into the final quarter.

Josiah Drew hit a field goal to cut the deficit to eight, but the Lightning responded with 9-1 run to take a 51-35 lead midway through the fourth.

Evangel outscored Hope 19-11 in the final eight minutes to seal the 61-43 win.

Hope Christian’s Immanuel Drew led all scorers with 19 points. Cameron Costa added nine points for the Eagles.

Grayson Melick led Evangel with 15 points while Josh Letson added 14 points for the Lightning. Judson Moses and Doug Battle each finished with 11 points.