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Panthers heartbroken on Sr. Night

By Stephen Dawkins

Jemison’s boys basketball team on Jan. 29 gave up a 12-point second half lead and fell to Montevallo, 51-46, on Senior Night.
The school’s senior athletes from several sports were recognized at halftime, and, shortly thereafter, the Panthers (6-16) appeared poised to win easily and send their fans home happy on a rainy night.
But the Bulldogs instead rallied for their fourth win of the season.
Montevallo’s Brandon Lilly drained his fourth 3-pointer of the night with 1:47 remaining in the third period, and the shot brought the visitors to within five points of the lead, at 33-28.
One minute into the final period, Montevallo’s Garrius Chappel stole the basketball while Jemison was trying to bring it up the court, and layed it in to tie the game at 39.
Jemison’s Cornelius Strong came right back down and gave the hosts the lead again, but it was short lived.
Montevallo tied it again with 4:46 on the clock, and a strong take by Lilly with 3:22 left to play gave the Dogs their first lead since it had been 5-4 in the early going.
Montevallo wouldn’t give up the lead, but Jemison did make it interesting.
Zak Kaylor inbounded the ball, stepped inbounds himself, then received the ball back and sank a 3-pointer from the left corner to make it 48-46 Montevallo with just 20 seconds left.
But Montevallo made its free throws when they mattered most, including one out of the hands of B.J. Smith with less than 10 seconds left that twice bounced high off the rim before finally falling through the net.
Montevallo had also threatened in the first half after Jemison led 17-7 after the first quarter. The visitors clawed back to within 21-16, but Jemison’s Scottie Hall answered by going up strong over a double team to score with 1:17 left in the half.
Hall was fouled on the play and converted the free throw to give Jemison a cushion—until the ill fated second half.
Hall led Jemison with 14 points, and Trey Bryant had 12 points.
Lilly had 19 point for Montevallo.
Jemison will compete in the Class 4A, Area 7 tournament at Calera beginning Friday.
The Panthers will play Calera at 7:30 p.m., with the winner scheduled to take on the Bibb County-Holt winner at 7 p.m. on Feb. 8.

Montevallo’s Cardwell scores 26 in win over Panthers
Amber Cardwell scored 26 points—all on 2-point field goals—to lead Montevallo’s girls team to a 46-26 win over Jemison.
Cardwell scored 20 of her points in the first half as the Bulldogs (20-7) built a 37-15 lead.
Shelby Lopez scored eight points for Jemison, and Codi Mims added six points.
Jemison’s girls will play Holt at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in the first round of the Class 4A, Area 7 tournament at Holt.
The winner will get either Calera or Bibb County in the championship game at 1 p.m. Saturday.