Walker County Basketball Tournament: Oakman girls break county drought

By JOHNATHAN BENTLEY, Eagle Sports Editor
Posted 1/20/18

CARBON HILL — Oakman’s county dry spell is finally over.

The Wildcats used a big third-quarter run to take a commanding lead on their way to a 46-36 victory over Dora for their first Walker County Tournament championship since 2004.

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Walker County Basketball Tournament: Oakman girls break county drought

Posted

CARBON HILL — Oakman’s county dry spell is finally over.

The Wildcats used a big third-quarter run to take a commanding lead on their way to a 46-36 victory over Dora for their first Walker County Tournament championship since 2004.

“This has been something we’ve been fighting for for three years,” Oakman coach MaKenzie Burgett said. “It means a lot because it shows the rest of the county that we deserve to be here. We’ve been building a program and it’s nice to see the girls succeed and for all that hard work to pay off.”

Dora stayed within striking distance of the Wildcats until the duo of Iyana Canada and Chante Williams went on an 8-0 run that turned a four-point game into a 12-point bulge.

Dora’s Deja Pendleton made a putback at the 4:30 mark of the third quarter, cutting the Oakman lead to 21-17. Canada followed with a basket, Williams made a layup, off a feed from Canada, and both players added one more score, giving the Wildcats a 29-17 lead.

After two baskets by Dora, Oakman’s Alaisha Hubbard connected on back-to-back 3-pointers for a 34-22 lead with 5:35 left in the game. The Bulldogs didn’t get closer than nine points the rest of the way.

The teams traded the lead throughout the first quarter with Oakman taking a 9-7 advantage into the second quarter. Tournament MVP Heather Thompson carried the load in the second quarter as the Wildcats took an 18-13 lead into the half.

Canada led Oakman (14-10) with 13 points and six rebounds, Williams had a double-double with 12 points and 14 rebounds, Thompson, who had a triple-double against Curry on Friday, had eight points and five steals. Hubbard had nine points and four steals.

For Dora (13-7), Pendleton had 16 points and Zharia Hubbard added nine.

Oakman’s Alaisha Hubbard, Williams and Canada joined Thompson on the all-tournament team along with Dora’s Zharia Hubbard and Pendleton, Carbon Hill’s Molly Kate Atkins and Abby Martin, Curry’s Abbey Moon and Keana Pearson and Cordova’s Mary Grayson Kilpatrick.

“It means a lot. This is a big win,” Thompson said of Oakman’s county crown. “I feel like this is a great start for us with area coming up. I feel like we can go far.”

Oakman’s girls last won the county tournament when the teams were split into small schools and large schools divisions. Coach Stephanie Phillips guided the Wildcats to county championships from 2002-04.

“That is a name that rings true for everything we’ve been accomplishing. They say, ‘That hasn’t been accomplished since coach Phillips.’ I take that as a compliment,” Burgett said.

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JV Boys

Oakman 37, Carbon Hill 35

Oakman won the JV boys county title, edging Carbon Hill 37-35 in Saturday’s third game.

Cannon Hiller had 18 points to lead the Wildcats. Cannon Taylor added nine points and Brody Harbison put in eight.

Ishmael Jones had 17 points for Carbon Hill.

The game was close throughout. The teams were tied 8-8 after the first quarter. Oakman led 20-17 at the half and 28-25 going into the final quarter.

———

JV Girls

Carbon Hill 24, Curry 18

Carbon Hill won the JV girls championship, getting past Curry 24-18 on Saturday.

The Bulldogs were led by tournament MVP Santana Clark with 10 points. Bailey Kelley added seven points. For Curry, Cam Wright put in eight.

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9th-grade Boys

Curry 56, Carbon Hill 27

Curry rolled to a 56-27 win in the ninth-grade boys game in Saturday’s opening game.

Cade Miller paced the Yellow Jackets with 16 points.