The Purple Hurricanes battled back-and-forth throughout the night at 2nd-ranked Sandy Creek, but were edged down the stretch 86-80 in a Region 5-AAAA tilt Tuesday night. Cartersville led 9-8 on a Jaylon Pugh three-pointer early in the opening period, but trailed 21-16 after the first eight minutes. Sandy Creek (9-4, 1-0) led by as many as 11 points in the second quarter, but the Canes rallied to narrow the lead to 42-41 in the final minute of the half.
The Patriots’ Chris Porter hit a three-pointer just before the intermission that put Sandy Creek up 45-41 at the break.
Sandy Creek pushed their lead to 54-45 midway through the third quarter, but a 16-2 run by the Canes allowed Cartersville to take a 63-61 lead to the final period.
The Patriots took another lead early in the fourth quarter, but a pair of free throws by T.J. Horton tied the game inside the three-minute mark, 73-73. Back-to-back baskets by Eric Williams and Evan Jester, however, gave Sandy Creek a 77-73 lead.
Pugh — who scored 10 of the Canes' final 15 and finished with 23 points — made a bucket to cut the Patriots’ lead to 77-75, but the Canes would get no closer as Sandy Creek held on for a six-point victory.
Perignon Dyer, Isaac Gridley, Trase Fezzia, and T.J. Horton all reached double figures for Cartersville. Dyer and Gridley finished with 13 and 11 points, respectively. Fezzia and Horton added 10 points each. JKobe Orr scored nine for the Canes.
Jester and K.J. Wilkins led Sandy Creek with 19 points apiece. Jarred Godfrey and Eric Williams scored 14 each for the Patriots. Xavier Brewer added 13 points for the Patriots.
Cartersville (9-3, 1-1) plays at Chapel Hill Friday at 7:30pm and will host Class AAA 8th-ranked Calhoun Saturday at 4pm.
SANDY CREEK GIRLS 65, CARTERSVILLE 35
The Lady Canes fell to the 9th-ranked Sandy Creek Lady Patriots Tuesday night in Tyrone, 65-35.
Sandy Creek (9-4, 1-0 Region 5-AAAA) led 19-10 after one quarter and led by as many as 14 points in the second quarter before holding a 34-24 advantage at halftime. The Lady Patriots put the game away by outscoring the Lady Canes 21-5 in the third quarter.
Madison McKinney scored nine points for Cartersville. Kimora McClinic added eight and London Shaw five.
Cartersville (6-7, 0-2) has now dropped four of their last five and will hit the road again Friday for a 6pm start at Chapel Hill before hosting Class AAA 7th-ranked Calhoun Saturday at 2:30pm.