By Bob Flynn
Register Sports Writer
For the second time in two weeks, Model Laboratory soundly defeated Berea Community Wednesday, 67-46, in the first round of the Touchstone Energy 11th Region All “A” Classic at Sayre.
But unlike the last game in which the Pirates jumped out to a quick lead and led after one quarter, Wednesday the Patriots were the team that jumped out to the early lead.
And after weathering a Berea run in the second quarter that cut the lead to 10 points, the Patriots steadily increased their lead in the second half and never let the Pirates get back into the game.
“I was concerned about how we would start the game. The last time we played, Berea came out and took the game to us and we were a little flat,” Model coach Wes Scarberry said. “But we started great. Our defense was exactly the way we wanted to play it and we were attacking on the offensive end. We held them down defensively. It was 21-4 at the end of the first quarter then I think we got complacent and they got back into it a little.”
After Andy Allen opened the game with a basket for Berea, Model reeled off 17 straight points to take a commanding 15-point lead.
Daniel Hubbard finally broke the drought for the Pirates with a basket with 1:15 left in the quarter, but baskets by Jesse Middleton, the fifth Patriot to score in the quarter, and Brendan Hill gave Model a 21-4 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Berea finally got its offense untracked in the second quarter. Trailing 24-3, Hubbard scored on a short jumper in the lane to begin a 10-0 run by the Pirates that culminated with a basket by Deandre Tate that cut the Model lead to 10 at 24-14 with 1:40 left in the quarter.
Model answered right back, scoring seven of the next nine points to take a 31-16 lead before Trey Terrill hit a three-pointer at the buzzer to make it 31-19 at the half.
The Pirates played even with the Patriots until mid-way through the third quarter when once again the Model pressure defense began creating turnovers, allowing Model to score seven of the final nine points of the quarter to build its lead up to 17 at 44-27.
Model blew the game open early in the fourth quarter, going on a 15-4 run to lead 53-29. The lead ballooned to 28 points before Scarberry began playing his bench the final five minutes.
“We really focused on protecting the ball and getting good shots, but I think some of the guys got caught in the emotions of today’s game and we weren’t making the shots we were getting and they got a lot of transition baskets. That’s been the story all year, turnovers and then not making shots,” Berea coach Cameron Jackson said. “In the second half we looked to get the ball inside to Hubbard a little more and that opened it up some. But it was just mental mistakes on our part and Model is a tough team. They really push the ball very well and we didn’t get back the way we wanted to get back.”
A.J. Hammons lead four Model players in double figures with a game-high 19 points. Hill and Anthony Gerald had 12 points apiece and Zack Rice-Gordon added 11.
The Patriots also got three points each from Jessie Middleton, Logan Jackson and Caleb KIncaid and two points from Ephriam Otieno.
The Pirates were led in scoring by Terrill with 11 points. Hubbard finished with nine points, while Allen chipped in with eight. Eli Woody and Bradley Atkins had four points apiece, Cameron Coyle had three points, Dustin Kates, Deandre Tate and Shyiem Alexander had two points each and Austin Warford had one point.
Model will play the winner of the Lexington Christian Academy and Sayre game in Saturday’s championship game.
Frankfort 64 Model 17
In the first round of the girls 11th Region All “A” Classic, Frankfort downed an injury-depleted Model team 64-17.
The Lady Panthers jumped out to a 20-1 lead in the first quarter, then extended it to 41-10 at the half. Using their full-court trapping defense up until the final minute and a half, the Lady Panthers continued to build their lead until the final margin.
Darrian Botts lead Model with six points. Kasi Schneid had three and Haley Hunt, Maci Hensley, Charity Mack and Chloe Dyer had two points each.