Grangers fall in overtime
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
CARROLLTON – The LaGrange Grangers pushed the Central-Carroll Lions to overtime on Saturday afternoon in a Region 5-AAAA showdown, but things didn’t go their way in the four-minute extra period.
Central-Carroll quickly built a six-point lead in overtime, and it didn’t look back on the way to a 76-67 victory.
The Grangers (17-3) lost their third straight game, but they remained in third place in Region 5-AAAA with a 4-3 record.
LaGrange has five region games remaining in the regular season, beginning with Tuesday’s home game against Cedartown.
LaGrange split its two regular-season games with Central-Carroll, and they were both close.
In the first meeting, LaGrange outlasted Central-Carroll 54-52.
The rematch was also a back-and-forth game, with Central taking control in overtime to improve to 2-5 in the region.
“We didn’t play horrible,” LaGrange head coach Mark Veal said. “We had a few turnovers. We just couldn’t stop them from getting to the rim. We played hard, but it is what it is. It’s hard to win on the road.”
Kindae Maddox led LaGrange with 17 points, with 13 of those points coming in the second quarter when he made three 3-pointers.
DJ Burks made two 3-pointers and was 4-of-5 from the free-throw line while scoring 16 points.
Kobe Jones added 14 points, and Javon Brown scored six points.
The Grangers made it look easy early on as they scored the game’s first nine points, but the Lions closed the first quarter on a 10-0 run to take a 10-9 lead.
The Grangers got hot in the second quarter and went ahead 23-15 on a Burks 3-pointer, but the Lions clawed back and cut their deficit to 30-27 at the half.
It remained tight in the third quarter, and it was Central-Carroll taking a 46-44 lead into the final quarter.
When Burks completed a three-point play with 4:27 to play the Grangers had a five-point cushion, but back came the Lions, who went on a 6-0 run to reclaim the lead.
Central’s lead was three when Brown scored to make it a 60-59 game with 17 seconds left.
After a Central-Carroll turnover with nine seconds to play, the Grangers had possession trailing by one point.
Jones was fouled going to the basket, and he made one of his two free-throw attempts to pull his team even with four seconds left, and Central missed a potential game-winning shot at the buzzer.
If the Lions were disappointed over losing the lead late in regulation, it didn’t show in their performance as the