Spartans open tourney with win
Sun Valley High’s boys basketball team rallied to beat A.L. Brown 63-59 in the first round of the CMC-NorthEast Christmas Tournament at Cox Mill High on Thursday.
Sun Valley trailed by just one after the first frame before winning the second 13-8 to take a four-point lead at the break (25-21).
After giving up 25 points in the third quarter, the Spartans then outscored the Wonders 19-13 in the fourth to pull out the victory.
Sun Valley improved to 6-5 on the season, while A.L. Brown fell to 4-4.
“We had our guys come in at 8:30 (Thursday) morning for shoot around and walk through,” said Sun Valley coach Keith Mason. “We wanted to make sure our guys were awake. It was huge for them to come out strong the way they did.”
Senior forward Kendall Ratliff led the Spartans with 17 points. Ratlilff scored 11 in the second half, including eight in the third quarter.
Junior Jimmy Hudgens added 12 points for Sun Valley, which also got 10 from senior Isaiah Blanchett.
Sophomore Hakeem Polk, senior Jacquez Johnson and junior Daquan Moody each chipped in with six for the Spartans.
“It was a really good team effort,” said Mason. “Everyone did a good job. My guys understand what it takes to win.”
Sun Valley was particularly effective from the free throw line in the final frame.
“The biggest thing was we were 10-for-13 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter,” said Mason. “To do that, it gets their confidence up and that’s huge.”
Sun Valley plays Independence in the semifinals today starting at 5:30 p.m. The Patriots (5-4) defeated Central Cabarrus in the opening round on Thursday.
Sun Valley boys 63, A.L. Brown 59
Sun Valley (6-5)
Kevin Saxton 1 2-2 4, Albert Funderburke 1 0-2 2, Hakeem Polk 2 4-4 6, Kendall Ratliff 6 5-8 17, Isaiah Blanchett 4 2-2 10, Daquan Moody 2 0-0 6, Jimmy Hudgens 3 6-8, Jacquez Johnson 3 0-0 6, Ty Thompson 0 0-0 0. Totals 22 19-25 63.
S. Valley^12^13^19^19 - 63
Brown^13^8^25^13 - 59