Oak Mountain has clean performance in win against Pelham
Published 9:16 am Wednesday, December 8, 2021
By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor
NORTH SHELBY – It was an ideal night for the Oak Mountain Eagles in all facets of the game against county foe Pelham on Tuesday, Dec. 7.
The Eagles fell behind 5-2 in the early going, but gained the lead at 6-5 and never trailed again en route to a 76-53 victory against the Panthers.
With the win, the defending Class 7A State Champs improved to 8-2 on the season and won their sixth consecutive game.
Oak Mountain had four players finish in double figures in the win with Wilder Evers leading the way behind 18 points. Matthew Heiberger was just behind with 16, while Gavin Nelson added 15 and Brady Dunn 13.
It marked Pelham’s first loss since their opening game, as the Panthers saw their seven-game winning streak snapped to fall to 6-2 on the season with second-leading scorer Kamari Hollis not playing.
The Panthers did get 18 points from leading scorer Michael Jones and continued to show the balance that has made them so successful with nine other scorers, but only Thompson Gennari finished with more than four thanks to nine points.
In the early going, the Panthers got off to a solid start on a layup from jones and 3-pointer from Jordan Holloway to take a 5-2 lead.
From there, however, Oak Mountain responded with a 12-0 run and outscored Pelham 16-4 the rest of the quarter to take an 18-9 advantage at the end of the quarter.
That was part of a dominant stretch of play in the first half that helped the Eagles create all of the separation they needed.
Carrying the momentum into the second quarter, Oak Mountain used another 12-0 run late in the second quarter and outscored the Panthers 21-6 overall in the period to take a 40-17 advantage into the halftime break.
Then, to start the second half, Nelson posted an and-1 to make it 43-18 and set the tone once again.
Oak Mountain eventually went up by as many as 31 in the third quarter, before Pelham ended the period on an 8-0 run to show some signs of life.
Still down 57-34, the Panthers needed a fast start to the final quarter, but the Eagles maintained their large lead throughout the period.
Pelham never got closer than the final difference of 19 points in the frame, as Oak Mountain closed out the 72-53 victory.
In addition to his 18 points, Evers added five assists, while Heiberger totaled eight rebounds and Nelson six rebounds in the winning effort.