Collins leads Franklin County to victory

Published 12:03 am Wednesday, February 18, 2009

MEADVILLE — Jamie Collins scored 30 points and his lay-up with a few seconds left gave the Franklin County Bulldogs a 57-55 win over the Newton County Cougars Tuesday night in the first round of the Class 3A South State Playoffs.

Newton County made a shot at the buzzer, but it did not count and Franklin County escaped with the two-point win.

“One of them kind of games,” Franklin County head coach Chris Jordan said. “We didn’t execute like we should. It was close most of the game. We happened to make a couple of buckets at the end.”

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Franklin County, the Region 7-3A champion, jumped out to a 17-10 lead at the end of the first quarter over Newton County, the No. 4 seed out of Region 5-3A. The Bulldogs then led 32-23 at halftime and it appeared that they would roll to a double-digit win.

But the Cougars made sure that would not be the case with a solid second-half performance. With the Bulldogs struggling to get their offense going in the third quarter, they Cougars outscored them 14-9 to cut the lead to three points heading into the fourth quarter.

And even though Newton County had an 18-16 advantage over Franklin County in the fourth quarter, the Cougars didn’t quite beat the clock on their desperation shot at the end of the game.

Taylor Washington scored 15 points and made a big 3-pointer for the Bulldogs during the fourth quarter. Collins also had 17 rebounds and blocked five shots.

“It was tough night. The other team was a good defensive bunch,” Jordan said.

Hakeem Wesley led Newton County with 18 points and Ladarren Jones had 12 points.

Franklin County will take on the winner of the Perry Central-Raymond game in the first round of the Class 3A South State Tournament Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

Wilkinson County boys 94,

Heidelberg 79

WOODVILLE — Kenny Harden scored a game-high 32 points to lead four Wilkinson County players in double figures as the Wildcats rallied from an early deficit to defeat the Heidelberg Oilers in a Class 3A South State first-round game Tuesday night.

Wilkinson County, the Region 7-3A runner-up, got off to a slow start and trailed Region 5-3A No. 3 seed Heidelberg 19-15 at the end of the first quarter. The Wildcats then outscored the Oilers 23-17 in the second quarter to take a two-point halftime lead.

The Wildcats then started to take control of the game in the third quarter and there was nothing the Oilers could do about it. A 26-16 advantage in that quarter gave Wilkinson County a 64-52 lead. The fourth quarter was a shootout as the Wildcats scored 30 points to the Oilers’ 27 points.

Darrius Knox scored 17 points while Quantarius Lee added 14 points and Delvin Fosselman chipped in with 13 points for Wilkinson County, which will take on the winner of the West Marion-Hazlehurst game Thursday at 8:30 p.m.