Andalusia clinches area

Published 12:20 am Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Andalusia’s Nico Johnson, Brandon Sims, Leslie James and Jamal Curry all helped lead their team to clinch the regular season area title Tuesday night against Hillcrest-Evergreen in Andalusia, 64-41.

Curry led his team with 17 points and also added 13 rebounds, Sims put up 13 while Johnson and James both scored 11 on the night.

“We might not do any damage later on, but at least we’re going to be at home,” Andalusia coach Richard Robertson said. “We’ve got to play Thomasville Friday night and it doesn’t do you any good to be at home and have the No. 1 seed and can’t handle anyone you play.”

The Bulldogs started the game strong going up 11 points (19-8) with 5:17 left in the second quarter, and added an additional 14 points to go into halftime with a 33-12 lead.

Robertson said in the second half, he made his players play “man to man” on offense because it was the right thing to do.

“We made them go man to man because (the players) didn’t want to,” Robertson said. “You make them go man for man because you go one on one. You go one on one because you can outsize people.”

Andalusia (17-2, 5-0 in Class 4A, Area 3) came out in the second half and dominated on the court, shooting 31 points to Hillcrest’s 23.

“We’re still wining, but we’re not flawless,” Robertson said. “When I say that, I don’t expect us to go without a turnover every ball game, but you don’t want to be in double digits. You don’t need to miss layups and free throws. Those are the two highest percentage shots in basketball.”

The most important thing that Robertson is still stressing to his players is that of fundamentals.

“You do fundamentals no matter what the circumstance of the game is,” he said. “Once the ball is thrown out, you play with intensity to the very end. They’ve got to put in all they’ve got to get playing time.

“That’s the thing that bothers me is what I’m having to do is worry about the opponent and Andalusia,” he said. “We’re still making mistakes and making bad decisions. (Hillcrest) got us man to man and we had a spread in scoring offense and we’re shooting 15-foot shots. You shoot free throws and layups and if they don’t foul you, you run the clock until you break them down and get them to do what you want.”

Andalusia will travel to Thomasville this Friday night. Tip off is at 4:30 p.m. with the B-team.