Fort Dale splits pair with Tuscaloosa

Published 4:00 pm Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Fort Dale Academy battled back from a 14-5 first period deficit, but Tuscaloosa Academy’s guards came alive towards the end of the game in leading the Knights to a 54-43 win on Saturday.

Ashton McLeod knocked down three consecutive three-pointers in the fourth period to push Tuscaloosa Academy’s lead to double-digits. The Eagles never recovered, falling to 15-6 on the year. Tuscaloosa improved to 16-9.

The Knights jumped out early on Fort Dale, using both hot outside shooting and powerful inside play to build the 14-5 lead. But Fort Dale’s Stuart Matthews connected on a pair of three-pointers and Luke Hutcheson added four points in the second period to knot the game at 19-19.

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Fort Dale took its first lead of the game with a Dustin Till two-pointer off a missed layup by Hutcheson with 5:45 remaining in the third period.

Tuscaloosa Academy only led 33-30 at the end of three, but then McLeod got hot from beyond the three-point arc.

Matthews had 14 points to lead Fort Dale. Hutcheson added 12.

McLeod scored 11 points, while Jeremiah Tulledge added 14 to lead Tuscaloosa. Alston Poulnitz had 13 points for the Knights.

The Eagles play Thursday at Huntingdon College in the Class 3A, Region 1 tournament at 3:30 p.m.

Fort Dale’s opponent will be the winner of the Glenwood/Macon-East contest, which will be played on Wednesday.

Fort Dale 58,

Tuscaloosa 44

Abbey Martin dropped in 25 points, including 12 in the first quarter, to lead Fort Dale to a 58-44 win over the visiting Lady Knights. Murphy Middleton added 11 points.

Fort Dale only led 28-25 at halftime, but broke the game open in the second half.

The Lady Eagles play Hooper Academy in the Class 3A, Region 1 tourney today.

Game time is 4 p.m. at Huntingdon.