Calera boys come up short for area title

Published 10:27 pm Monday, February 10, 2014

By TREY HICKMAN/For the Reporter

CENTREVILLE — If a Hollywood script had been written about the Class 4A Area 7 tournament championship game Feb. 10 between Calera and host Bibb County, it probably would have looked nothing like the contest that unfolded.

Lacking any of the suspense one would hope for and expect from a title-game match-up, Bibb County established itself early on as the better team — at least for the night — on its way to a 72-31 win.

Of Artez Stacy’s game-high 21 points, 11 came in the opening quarter as the Choctaws forged a 20-7 lead. The outlook got bleaker for the Eagles in the second period as Bibb County took a 26-point advantage into halftime.

Things continued to get worse for Calera after intermission and Bibb County breezed to the championship, with the final tally telling the whole story.

“(There’s) not much to say,” said Calera head coach George Drake. “That score tells it all. I think in that first half, Bibb County really came out here and really just enforced their will on us. They have guys who are (tall) and can do a lot of different things and they just kind of enforced their will on us and I feel like we didn’t respond.”

For Bibb County, junior sensation Danjel Purifoy followed Stacy with 16 points, including seven in the tone-setting first quarter. Purifoy — ranked by ESPN as the nation’s No. 38 prospect in the Class of 2015 — also was named tournament MVP.

Tyler Harrell led Calera with seven points and six rebounds while Ronnie Clark had five points and four rebounds. Jordan Bishop recorded six points and Tray Jones had four in the loss.

For Calera, there’s no rest for the weary.

“It’s a lot of ball for us still to play, and it’s up to us to get back these next few days and string up a couple of good, hard practices and get ready for the next (game),” Drake said. “A game like this you have to put it behind you quickly, especially considering we have another game to play.”

Up next for the Eagles is a date with Dora in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs.

“It’s going to be another game where we have to come out here and really execute both on the offensive and the defensive end.”

Calera travels to Dora Feb. 14.