Both sets of Panthers win season openers

Published 7:15 pm Thursday, November 20, 2014

By Brandon Sumrall | Special to the Advertiser

Jemison’s varsity girls and boys basketball teams got the 2014-15 season off on the right foot Tuesday as both picked up wins over West Blocton.

The JHS girls won 37-23, and the boys won 67-56.

Twelve points on a 50-percent shooting effort by Laura Vinzant (including two-of-three from behind the three-point arc) in the first period helped the Panthers to a 17-3 lead.

To the hoop: Laura Vinzant scored a team-high 19 points in the Jemison girls’ season-opening win over West Blocton on Tuesday.

To the hoop: Laura Vinzant scored a team-high 19 points in the Jemison girls’ season-opening win over West Blocton on Tuesday.

The tempo slowed in the second period as the Panthers made deep substitutions, but baskets by Vinzant and Taylor Ray and two free throws from India Satterfield extended the Panthers’ lead to 23-6 at halftime.

Thanks to a basket by Brooklyn Woods and a three-pointer by Khesontae Vance, West Blocton started the third period on a 5-2 run.

Free throws by Maria Flores and India Satterfield, combined with back-to-back three-pointers by Vinzant and Karmen Mims, gave the Panthers a 37-13 lead going to the final period.

With the Panthers resting their starters, the Tigers outscored Jemison 10-0 in the final period, but it wasn’t nearly enough as the Panthers cruised to a season-opening win.

Vinzant led the Panthers with 19 points, five rebounds, six steals and a block. Satterfield added four points, six rebounds and three steals.

JHS boys pull away late

The boys game was closley contested and not decided until the final minutes.

Both teams struggled at the start of the game until Shunderrius Strong got the Panthers going with their first basket at the 6:21 mark.

Jemison's Cody Thompson scores two points during Tuesday's game.

Jemison’s Cody Thompson scores two points during Tuesday’s game.

Wesley McGehee added another Panthers basket, but it was matched by a Keyshawn Kelser field goal to bring the score to 4-2.

Cody Thompson sunk a two-pointer for the Panthers to start a 7-0 run to end the first period, giving Jemison a 14-4 lead.

The Tigers’ shooting improved drastically in the second period as they went on a 15-5 run and tied the game at 19-all with 3:03 to play in the half.

Coming out of a Panthers timeout, Strong released a three-pointer that found nothing but net to give Jemison a three-point lead.

Strong followed that up with another two-point basket, and with a basket by Griffin Burnette, the Panthers had a five-point edge at 26-21.

Jemison’s lead wouldn’t hold, as with 16 seconds to play in the half, Omar Martin completed the old fashioned three-point play to knot the game at 31-all at the half.

Martin got things started for the Tigers in the second half with a two-point basket, but a basket by Mason Jones and three-pointer by McGehee put the Panthers up by three.

Strong added another basket to extend the Jemison lead to five, but scores by Blocton’s Martin and Jordan Snelson cut the visitors’ deficit to one point.

Cody Thompson sank a two-point basket to increase the Panther lead back to three points, but a three-pointer by Kalon Kelser tied the game at 41-all.

Mason Jones broke the tie and started an 8-3 Jemison run to close out the period and give the Panthers a 48-43 lead.

Both teams exchanged baskets early in the fourth period, but the Wildcats would never draw any closer than four points of the Panthers.

With a 52-48 lead midway through the final period, Thompson and Nunn led a 6-0 Panthers run to extend the Jemison lead to 10 points, and the visitors wouldn’t threaten again.

Strong led the way for the Panthers with 13 points, 11 rebounds and three steals. Tremon Bryant added 14 points, two rebounds and two steals for Jemison.