Belgreen girls advance to regionals
The Belgreen Bulldogs won the Class 1A Area, 14 tournament for the fourth straight year, beating Hackleburg 46-38. Belgreen followed that by beating Hubbertville 50-31 in subregion play to advance to the Northwest Regional tournament.
Belgreen faces Meek today at 3 p.m. at Wallace State Community College in Hanceville. If they win, they will play the winner of Shoals Christian/Marion County Feb. 19 at 3 p.m. for a chance to go to the Final Four in Birmingham.
In the area championship game, Belgreen withstood a fight from rival Hackleburg and won the game from the free throw line, going 17-for-20 as a team.
Belgreen led Hackleburg 13-10 at the end of the first quarter. Both teams scored 10 points each in the second, giving Belgreen a three-point halftime lead, 23-20. The Bulldogs increased their lead by one point in the third to 35-31. Down the stretch, Belgreen’s success at the line gave them the advantage.
Dacota Green led Belgreen with 18 points, going 9-for-10 from the free throw stripe. Bryn Scott, Isabella Tate and Makenna Fisher scored six points each. Alayana Tate and Carson Hovater added five points each.
In the subregion game, free throws again made the difference late in the game.
Belgreen and Hubbertville were knotted at 7-7 at the end of the first quarter, and the Bulldogs held a two-point advantage at halftime, 17-15. Belgreen dominated the third quarter, outscoring the Lions 15-7 to take a 32-22 lead into the final quarter. Belgreen outscored Hubbertville 22-9 in the fourth quarter and went 16-for-21 at the free throw line to seal the win.
Dacota Green and Makenna Fisher led the Bulldogs with 15 points and 13 points respectively. Bryn Scott added nine points, Lilliana Willingham six points, Isabella Tate four points, Morgan Lauderdale three points, Carson Hovater three points and Lily Green one point.
After going 11-17 last season, Belgreen coach Marty Cooper may have done his best high school coaching job so far, leading the Bulldogs to the Class 1A, Area 15 championship and a final record of 18-8. Belgreen beat Hackleburg 45-36 to win the area, but fell to Lynn 50-38 in subregion play, ending the Bulldogs’ season.
In the area championship game, Belgreen jumped on Hackleburg from the start, taking a 15-4 first quarter lead. The Panthers battled back, outscoring the Bulldogs 9-4 in the second quarter to cut Belgreen’s lead to 19-13 at halftime. The Bulldogs extended their lead to 29-19 at the end of the third quarter. Both teams scored 16 points each in the fourth quarter as Belgreen held on to the win.
Jonathan Mendoza led Belgreen with 17 points, scoring seven in the first quarter and six in the third. Will King added nine points. Braycen Johnson, the Bulldogs’ leading scorer, was held in check until the fourth quarter when he scored six of his eight points. Landon Cox also scored the bulk of his points in the fourth quarter, scoring six of his seven points. Alex Guidry and Hunter Woodruff added two points each.
In subregion play, Belgreen played from behind much of the game. The Bulldogs trailed Lynn 13-10 at the end of the first quarter and 30-22 at halftime. The Bears extended their lead to 36-27 at the end of the third quarter and pulled away in the fourth.
Will King and Jonathan Mendoza led Belgreen with nine points. Braycen Johnson added seven points, Alex Guidry five points, Landon Cox four points, Ben Wilkins three points, Gave Estrada two points and Jake Dill one point.