McKenzie upsets Panthers, 45-42

Published 11:50 am Monday, January 17, 2011

The McKenzie Tigers upset the Georgiana Panthers on the road Tuesday in a close match that ended 45-42.

Coach Miles Brown was pleased with the victory, which was the first instance of McKenzie beating Georgiana in basketball in the five years of Brown’s tenure at MHS.

“It was just a great ballgame to watch,” Brown said. “The atmosphere was electrifiying—in the fourth, they would score and their fans would go crazy and then we would score and our fans would get loud.”

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At the end of the first, McKenzie was up 15-12, but the Panthers battled back to grab the lead 24-19 before half.

Georgiana coach Kirk Norris said that his players wasted too many opportunities.

“We didn’t close it out, and let them hang around,” Norris said. “Bottom line, they made their shots when they needed to, and we didn’t.”

Georgiana increased their lead to 10 points in the third, but McKenzie came back strong, tying the game going into the fourth, 32-32.

With 30 seconds left in the fourth, the Panther’s still clung to a one-point lead when they drew a foul. All the foul-shots, however, missed their mark.

“We were 0 for 6 in free-throw shooting in the fourth,” Norris said.

Cliff Pugh led the Tiger’s offensive effort with 21 points, while Tadarius Gill and Sir Wallace Presley threw up 6 apiece.

“It was just a great team effort,” Brown said. “Our guys played extremely well versus a very good basketball team.”