The Royals on the attack. Photo: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff
The Scorpions defeated the Raptors.
#By BRENT STUBBS
#Senior Sports Reporter
#CHAD Smith struggled with his shot all game until he got open with just seconds left on to the clock to nail a three-pointer to lift the CI Gibson Rattlers past the Anatol Rodgers Timberwolves 70-69.
#The one-point victory secured a sweep for the Rattlers, coached by Kevin ‘KJ’ Johnson over the Timberwolves, coached by Harcourt McCoy on Tuesday night at the AF Adderley Gymnasium as CI Gibson advanced to the senior boys’ championship series.
#It also completed a sweep of the other three best-of-three semifinal playoffs in one half of the Government Secondary Schools Sports Association’s basketball postseason.
#CI Gibson’s senior girls also advanced to the championship with a 36-027 sweep of the CR Walker Knights. In the junior boys division, the DW Davis Royals needed overtime to hold off the CR Reeves Raptors to advanced and the TA Thompson Scorpions prevailed past the Raptors in the junior girls series.
#They will all await the winner of their respective series when the next half of the playoff brackets is played today at the AF Adderley Gymnasium, starting at 4pm.
#Rattlers 70. Timberwolves 69: In what turned out to a classic physical battle that saw both teams traded the lead, Smith’s three-pointer got CI Gibson over the hump to get them in the final.
#The Rattlers had a chance to increase the lead with 11.3 seconds left, but they turned the ball over. Anatol Rodgers got possession, but ran the clock down to 1.2 seconds before they missed. The Rattlers erased the time of the clock and they began their celebrations.
#“That was like a practice shot,” said Smith of his game winning basket. Coach always told us not to worry about the last shot, just concentrate on the next shot.
#“I wasn’t having a good game shooting the ball, so I was glad that I got that one in. It was a really physical game, but we played with a lot of heart and we held on for the win.”
#Smith, who played with four fouls, finished the game with eight points. In balanced scoring attack, Fredrick King had 10 points; Santino Sawyer had nine, all on three three-pointers in the second quarter; Saheed Sanusi also had nine; Emaniel Alexandre chipped in with eight; Kenvon Farrington had seven and James Delia and Charles Joseph both helped out with six.
#Despite playing with four fouls, Randy Blanfort muscled his way inside for a 22 points to lead Anatol Rodgers. Kevin Thompson contributed 17; Steve Schurton had 11 Leron Smith had seven and Chadrack Gilles added six.
#CI Gibson led 14-13 at the end of the first quarter and they extended their lead to 37-28 at the half before they posted a 55-47 margin at the end of the third.
#Rattlers 36, Knights 27: Just like their senior boys, CI Gibson advanced in the senior girls, but their path was paved by a comfortable margin.
#Glennia Sands got off to a great start with in the first quarter as they opened a 15-2 spurt. She finished with a game high 15 points. Jeansline Carson had eight; Nathayla Lightbourne had five and Esther Pierre and Kia Brice both had four.
#After they surged ahead, the Rattlers increased their lead to 24-10 at the half. However, CR Walker made a run for it in the second half. They trailed 32-16 at the end of the fourth and outscored CI Gibson 11-4 in the fourth, but their rally was a little too late.
#“We played kind of sluggish in the first game because we had about a 12-day lay-over from the regular season,” said CI Gibson’s head coach Kevin Johnson.
#“Tonight, we came out aggressive. We still missed a lot of free throws and lay-ups, but the energy is there and our defence forced a lot of turnovers and we were able to capitalised on it.”
#Alesha Curtis led CR Walker with 10; Kevinique Culmer had six; Jayne Newry had four and both Willon Delancy and Lichelda St Fleur had three in a losing effort.
#Royals 55, Raptors 52: Keon Cooper, the smallest player on the court, hit a big basket at the buzzer to enable DW Davis to come back and even the score at the end of regulation at 47-47 and force an overtime period.
#In the extra three minutes, it came down to another heroic effort as Cooper came through once again with a jumper to seal the deal with 9.4 seconds for the final score in their junior boys’ match-up.
#Cooper finished with six points, but it Frank Wallace who led the Royals attack with a game high 19 points. Philip Dawkins added nine.
#“All day I had a funny feeling, so I had to adjust my strategy,” said Royals’ head coach Mark Hanna. “We re undefeated, so it won’t be easy. The fans were against us and the referees were making a lot of calls against us, but I had to trust in God to get us through.”
#For the losing CH Reeves, Johnathan Joseph had 11 and both Tollien Marshall and Dwayne Finley had eight.
#Scorpions 30, Raptors 20: Adena Webster had a game high 11 points and Dwaynae Knowles and Dominique Rolle added eight piece to send TA Thompson junior girls into the championship.
#“Our girls missed a lot of lay-ups, so we have to go back to the drawing board and work on that,” said TA Thompson’s coach Donnavette Martin. “It doesn’t matter who we get. We just have to go out and do our work.”
#Tara Loussant had six and Vantsie Davis added four in the loss for CH Reeves.