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Georgiana boys win another close ball game

The Georgiana Panthers continued their trend of winning close games with a 54-52 victory over Luverne Tuesday night.

“It’s always stressful, but we’ll take ‘em how we can get ‘em,” said head coach Kirk Norris. “A win is a win.”

The game was tied with the third quarter winding down, but LaJordan Crittenden hit a three-pointer with three seconds to go in the quarter to put Georgiana ahead 38-35 to start the fourth quarter.

Georgiana pulled out to a 42-37 lead, but Luverne cut into that with a three-pointer.

However, Jerrod Lee responded with a three to make the lead five points again.

As the game wound down, Donovan McIntosh came through for the Panthers with an old-fashioned three-point play by hitting a shot and then converting on a foul shot.

With a minute left, the Panthers held a slim 51-49 lead that Luverne cut to a single point with a free throw.

Derrick Crittenden hit one of two shots from the line with 25 seconds to go, and Victor Marshall added a layup on a breakaway to seal the game.

“Free throws have been our Achilles’ heel all year, but we made them when we needed to,” Norris said. “We’ve been practicing them, and it’s something we’ve been preaching.”

Norris also said that he was happy with how his team responded to Luverne’s style of play.

“They are a good team,” he said. “They’re a former area rival, and they’ve been to regionals the past several years. They’re also probably the most physical team we’ve seen all year, and we’re going to see a lot of that once we get to area play.”

Damien McIntosh had 13 points to lead the Panthers, and Marshall added eight.

Georgiana will now head to a Christmas tournament at Montgomery Catholic, where they will play a double-header on Saturday.