Patriots oust Chargers in CPIC semifinals
By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on February 15, 2014 11:13 PM
Wayne Country Day withstood Freedom Christian's initial punch to the mouth, but couldn't overcome the constant barrage of body blows Friday evening.
The third-seeded Chargers trimmed a 17-point deficit to five points, however, the second-seeded Patriots won 70-58 in semifinal-round play of the Coastal Plains Independent 1-A/2-A Conference tournament.
Gunner Hardason and Dominique Kelman Poto finished with 21 points apiece for Freedom, which played top-seeded Greenfield for the tournament title Saturday evening. Thank God Avar provided 12 points.
Joel Davis led WCDS with 24 points and Lee Atkinson supplied 14 points. Shahim Muhammed contributed 10 points.
Freedom's height advantage limited Wayne Country Day's ability to rebound and chances to convert second-chance opportunities. The Patriots had little trouble getting offensive putbacks.
Avar's dunk capped a 12-4 run and gave Freedom a 28-11 lead early in the second quarter.
"If we're not making our shots against size like that it's tough," Chargers' head coach David Flowers said. "We were getting one shot where if we didn't keep them off the boards they were going to have two or three shots."
Wayne Country Day reeled off 11 unanswered points to close to within 28-23, but the margin swelled back to 34-23 by halftime.
The Chargers (22-11 overall) again cut the deficit to five points at 41-36 midway through the third quarter. Freedom used its size advantage to get to the free throw line or get layups during a 10-0 run that stretched the lead to 51-36.
"Basketball is a game of runs and ours just wasn't as good as theirs," Flowers said. "We needed one or two more stops or even if its was just them missing a shot. We made those runs and we would get the lead down to five points or seven points, and it seemed like the wheels would fall off for a second."
Freedom shot 11 of 15 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter to seal the win.
Wayne Country Day got no closer than 12 points in the final quarter. The Patriots went 11 for 15 from the free throw line during the fourth quarter to seal the win.
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