Early lead gives Luverne edge

Published 11:02 pm Wednesday, December 28, 2011

ndalusia's Joe Flowers had 13 points, all in the first half, for the Bulldogs Wednesday night. The Bulldogs fell 40-37 to Luverne at the Ozark Holiday Shootout.

OZARK — Andalusia got off to a slow start against Luverne Wednesday night, and that’s all the Tigers needed to beat the Bulldogs 40-37 in the first round of the Ozark Holiday Shootout at the Ozark Civic Center.

“We didn’t play well enough to win,” AHS coach Richard Robertson said. “They just outplayed us one-on-one.

“We just couldn’t make the plays,” he said.

From the start of the game, AHS lost to the tip off, which resulted in a quick two points by the Tigers.

LHS went up 5-0 on a 3-pointer on transition.

Andalusia was plagued with turn overs and missed shots early in the first period, which netted a 14-0 run by Luverne after a Tiger steal and lay up with 5:02 in the first period.

The Bulldogs (9-7) got on the board with 4:35 remaining in the first on a pass from Lakelyus “Fathead” Adams to Sam Byrd.

Luverne wasn’t showing Andalusia much, only playing defense in a 2-3 zone.

Andalusia’s Joe Flowers found Niguel Jones for two points, and the Bulldogs trailed 14-4 at the end of the first period.

Flowers hit three 3-pointers in the second period to help the Bulldogs to outscore the Tigers 16-11, despite trailing 25-20 at half time.

At half time, Flowers made all of his points for the night at 13. He also made a 1-and-1, and an easy lay up on a pass from Jacard Townsend.

In the third period, AHS came back with the help of Jones as he made two jumpers to tie the game at 25-all with 3:47 on the clock.

Jones added four more points on passes from Townsend and Jalen Cross to give the Bulldogs a 29-27 lead.

The game remained close all the way until the end of the third period, where LHS held a 34-33 lead.

“I admire us for fighting back, but you’ve got to fight from the time you throw it up,” Robertson said.

With the score at 38-37 and with two minutes remaining on the clock, the Tigers went into use-the-clock mode, draining 1 minute, 21 seconds off the ticker before calling a time out with 39 seconds left.

Andalusia’s last shot at getting the win came with Townsend, who had to improvise, not finding a man for a pass on the inside.

Townsend missed the back-up jumper, and Luverne sealed the win with a lay up on transition.

Jones had 12 points for Andalusia.

“We’re just not a good basketball team at this point,” Robertson said. “We’re going to try to get better. We had opportunities, but we didn’t capitalize on them.”

Jamarcus June led the Tigers with eight points, and Preston Shankey and Tige Townsend had seven points each.

Andalusia will play Brantley today at 4 p.m. in the loser’s bracket. Luverne advances to play Charles Henderson at 7 p.m.