Montevallo beats Leeds to earn spot in sub-regionals

Published 9:49 am Wednesday, February 6, 2019

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Sports Editor

CHILDERSBURG – For the third time this season, the Montevallo Bulldogs and Leeds Greenwave met on the hardwood on Tuesday, Feb. 5, after splitting the first two games in the regular season, but this time around, more was on the line for the two teams competing in the first round of the area tournament at Childersburg High School.

With Leeds winning the first matchup of the season 54-47 and the Bulldogs bouncing back to win the second 70-58, their seasons were on the line the third time around with both teams looking to advance to the area tournament championship as well as the sub-regional round of the playoffs.

In the 70-58 victory against the Greenwave a week earlier, Montevallo seemingly found something that worked and carried that momentum over into the must-win game, because the Bulldogs were able to hold the lead at the end of every quarter on their way to a 56-48 victory to earn a spot in the area tournament championship game as well as the sub-regionals.

A big reason for that win was the intensity Montevallo played with on the defensive end of the floor early in the game.

The Bulldogs, who have been up and down defensively this season, came out with a point to prove in the opening minutes of the game and limited Leeds to six first-quarter points.

Montevallo’s offense wasn’t as potent as it has been at times throughout the season, otherwise the game might have gotten out of hand early, but the Bulldogs were able to post 11 points to take an 11-6 advantage at the end of the opening quarter.

Offensively, the Bulldogs still couldn’t find consistency in the second period, but they were able to get a boost from sophomore Kavounte Britton, who scored seven points in the frame and helped his team add 13 more points.

Montevallo also got another strong defensive performance in the quarter by holding Leeds to 10 points. That combined with Britton’s offensive presence helped the Bulldogs extend their lead to 24-16 at the halftime break.

Leeds needed to make some big adjustments offensively at the halftime break, and with the season on the line, the Greenwave did just that and came out battling in the third quarter.

Montevallo’s consistent offensive effort led to 13 points for the second period in a row, but the Bulldogs had relied on their defense in the early going, something that somewhat slipped away from them in the third as Leeds posted 16 points in the frame.

While it wasn’t enough for the Greenwave to overtake the lead, they had battled back to within five points at 37-32 heading to the final quarter with a new-found hope offensively.

Fortunately for the Bulldogs, they were able to adjust to the new pace of the game in the final quarter, as their offense finally got going.

Montevallo had its best offensive quarter of the game in the fourth quarter, and despite giving up 16 more points, the Bulldogs were able to pull away in the final minutes thanks to 19 points of their own, which led to the final score of 56-48.

Montevallo was led by freshman Michael Jones in his second game back from an injury with 15 points, while Britton added 14 points and five rebounds. Jamarius Carter just missed out on a double-double by posting nine points and 13 rebounds in the winning effort.