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Briarwood players shine at GISA holiday tournament

The Briarwood Academy Lady Bucs placed second in the GISA Holiday Classic and landed two players on the All-Tournament Team, while the Runnin' Bucs had one player selected to the All-Tournament team in the tournament hosted by Edmund Burke Academy last weekend in Waynesboro.

Junior Brittini Phelps and sophomore Maria Johnson made the All-Tournament team for the Lady Bucs, while senior Price Chalker made the team for the Runnin' Bucs.

In the Lady Bucs first game of the tournament, the Lady Bucs were two points (12-10) behind EBA at the end of the first quarter, but came back in the second to dominate the Lady Spartans, outscoring the EBA girls 11-3 for a 21-15 halftime lead. The Lady Bucs lost one point (10-11) to EBA in the third quarter, but came back in the fourth to outscore the Lady Spartans 11-4 for a 42-30 win.

"We won despite our poor shooting performance from the floor in the first half," Coach Clayton Parrish said, adding that the girls hit only six of 41 shots taken from the floor, an average of 14 percent.

"I think we wore them down with our pressure defense," he continued. "We created a lot of turnovers.

"The thing I was proudest of is we were aggressive on the court, and we went to the free throw line 27 times and hit 17 of them. That's 64%. Before this game we were shooting 51 percent from the free throw line as a team, so that was a good improvement."

Johnson led the Lady Bucs with 12 points, followed by Phelps with 10 points.

The Lady Bucs, who dropped a game earlier in the season to Augusta Prep by only one point, 34-35, fell to the Class AAA Lady Crusaders, 37-47, in the tournament championship game on Saturday.

"The score is a little bit misleading," Coach Parrish said. "It was a back and forth game, and we had to foul at the end of the game to try to catch up with them.

"Augusta Prep had a more than significant height advantage on us, but the girls did a good job of boxing out and minimizing their offensive rebounds," he continued.

Again, the Lady Bucs did a poor job of shooting the ball from the floor in the first half, hitting only six of 31 from the floor.

Also, again, the Lady Bucs put forth a good defensive effort.

"We did take the ball to those taller players," Coach Parrish said. "We were aggressive in getting the ball to the basket and drawing fouls. We were 17 out of 29 from the foul line, which is right at 59 percent."

Phelps led the Lady Bucs with 18 points.

The Runnin' Bucs dropped their first of the game of the tournament 42-54 to host Edmund Burke Academy on Friday.

"Overall, I was pleased with the effort of the team," Coach Bo Fleming said.

The game was tight until the fourth quarter when the Bucs, down by six with one minute left in the game, were forced to foul. The Bucs missed their scoring opportunities, while EBA hit their foul shots to win by 12.

"We didn't shoot the ball well, but we played defense well," Coach Fleming said. "Eventually, our shots will have to start falling."

Chalker led the Bucs with 18 points, including four three-pointers, followed by junior Trey Stadler with nine points and 16 rebounds.

The Bucs dropped their Saturday game to Augusta Prep 44-71.

"Augusta Prep is one of the better teams in AAA, and they have one of the best players in the state. He (AP's best player) had 34 points. No one else on the team was even in double digits."

Again, Chalker led the Bucs with 13 points, including two three-pointers. Senior Ryan Gerlach added nine points, while sophomore Matthew McElveen had six points, including two three-pointers.

Chalker, who scored 31 points during the tournament, was the only Runnin' Buc named to the All Tournament team.

"I was so proud of him. He deserved it. He had two good nights," Coach Fleming said.

The Briarwood teams will travel to Augusta this Friday to face Curtis Baptist School in the final game before the Christmas holidays.

The "B" Lady Bucs will play at 4 p.m., followed by the "B" Bucs at 5 p.m., followed by the Lady Bucs at about 6:30 p.m., and the Bucs at about 8 p.m.

Web posted on Thursday, December 18, 2008

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