Patriots can’t get over quarterfinal hump, lose to Torches

Published 3:44 pm Friday, February 25, 2022

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By Carey Reeder | Staff Writer

After dropping their two regular season matchups against Tabernacle, Chilton Christian Academy suffered the same fate on Feb. 24 in Oxford falling 53-48 to the Torches in the ACAA Class 2A state basketball quarterfinals.

While this matchup was much closer than the previous two, CCA could not overcome the top seed in the North division.

“I appreciate the intensity and effort our guys played with,” CCA head coach Shanon Hamilton said. “It was a game where things were so close, we just needed some things to go our way and they didn’t.”

Hamilton raved about the transformation his team went through from the beginning of the season, all the way to the state quarterfinals. Constant improvement, and a will to improve helped shape the identity of this year’s Patriot team.

“It was a team that never settled, a team that was always working hard to try to become better,” Hamilton said. “That’s what I’ll remember most about this team.”

CCA was led by eighth grader Cayman Hamilton, who put in a game-high 23 points, and added four rebounds and five steals. Junior Donavon Norcross pitched in 17 points and three rebounds.

The Patriots shot a respectable 40% from the field and 76% from the free throw line, which helped CCA stay close throughout the game.

However, 13 turnovers and allowing too many offensive rebounds, and second chance opportunities spelled the downfall for the Patriots.

CCA will graduate seniors Joseph Kasper and Joseph Gay, but retain their two leading scorers in Cayman Hamilton and Norcross for next season.

“We’re going to look for them to put in the work in the offseason to get better,” Hamilton said. “The juniors that will be incoming seniors need to provide leadership and stability while we develop some young players to go alongside them.”