Shelby County boys and girls sweep Chilton County

By BRANDON SUMRALL | Special to the Reporter

CLANTON –The Shelby County Wildcats picked up a pair of big road wins on Tuesday, Jan. 21, by completing the season sweep of area foe Chilton County. The girls came away with a dominant 69-28 win, while the boys picked up a 68-59 victory over the Tigers.

Shelby County wasted little time flexing its offensive and defensive muscle during the first period. While the Wildcats’ defense only allowed seven Chilton County points during the period, eight points from Skye Knighten-Lilly along with four more from Nataley Whitner propelled Shelby County to a commanding 22-7 lead after one period of play.

That trend continued into the second period, as the Wildcats continued a 16-0 run that eventually ended on a basket from Jasmine Martin. Aaliyah Cotton answered quickly with a basket for Shelby County and got the Wildcats off and running once again, outscoring the Tigers 22-7 in the second period to take 44-14 lead into the halftime break.

Chilton started the third with a run of its own, as a basket from Tyonna Booker kicked off a 10-0 run by the Tigers that cut the lead to 22. A quick timeout from head coach Ashley Phillips calmbed the Wildcats’ nerves, as they answered with a 12-0 run of their own that sent the game to the fourth with the Wildcats holding a 60-24 lead.

With Shelby County holding a 36-point lead, along with a hot clock and both teams choosing to sub deep into their respective benches, the Wildcats outscored Chilton 9-4 during the final period on their way to a 69-28 victory.

Knighten-Lilly led the Wildcats with 26 points, four rebounds and two steals.

The boys game went on to be a much more closely contested affair despite a game-opening 8-2 run by the Wildcats thanks to four points from Jordan Morris.

Jakeveon Bolding ended the Shelby County run with a pair of threes that knotted the game at eight all. A back and forth game then ensued until the Tigers were able to score one more basket late to take a 16-13 lead at the end of the quarter.

Riley Lewter started the second period with a three for Shelby County that knotted the score and 16, and started another back-and-forth battle. Shi Keem Laister added a basket for the Tigers and was followed by another three from Bolding that put Chilton out in front by four. With a pair from the line for Laister, Chilton headed the locker room with a 29-23 halftime lead.

Halftime adjustments saw the Wildcats start the second half with a comeback, as Morris and Noah Harper pulled Shelby County to within two, while a basket from Isaac Montgomery later made the comeback complete while making it a 31-31 game.

Moments later a three from Morris with 2:52 to play in the period gave the Wildcats the lead for the final time. With the addition of a late basket from Larz Balfanze, Shelby County took a 42-39 lead to the final period.

The Wildcats quickly extended their lead to eight during the early minutes of the fourth but were answered by a three from BJ Davis and a pair from the line by Bolding that cut the lead to three.

Landen Stewart and Isaac Montgomery combined to push the Wildcats out in front by eight again shortly after, while Jay Quan Cohen and Bolding combined to help cut the lead back to four.

Four from Montomgery made it an eight point game, while Morris extended the lead to 10 with 3:17 to play. Sporting a 10-point lead and with the Tigers unable to cut into the lead, the Wildcats held on to escape with a 68-59 victory over Chilton County.

Lewter and Morris each put up 14 points for the Wildcats while Bolding led the Tigers with 21.