“We haven’t picked up a basketball since Monday night. We lost Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. We can’t come in on Sunday,” Bulldogs coach Stephen Bailey said late Friday morning. “I really did not feel comfortable jumping back into it. With the time we’ve got to get prepared for either Pleasant Valley or Ohatchee, I feel like we need to spend it on (practice) versus playing that game.”
At the Area 10 seeding meeting earlier Friday, it was decided to play the No. 4 versus No. 5 games for both boys and girls at Woodland, the site of the girls tournament, on Tuesday. The will allow Pleasant Valley and Wellborn as well as Ohatchee and Woodland to play their remaining Area 10 game on Monday, the day the girls’ spur game was initially scheduled.
The boys’ tournament shifts to Ranburne Friday. No. 2 Wellborn and No. 3 Woodland will play at 6 p.m. ahead of Ranburne’s game. Friday’s winners meet Monday at 7 p.m. in the area championship game.
Ranburne held a commanding 42-26 halftime lead against Ohatchee and cruised from there on the way to the Class 2A, Area 10 victory. Brayden Wilson netted a pair of 3-point baskets as a part of his team-best 14 points. Mark David Smith scored 11 points and led on the boards with eight rebounds.
Jay Smith and Dylan Wiggins each scored 10 points and Smith had seven rebounds. Point guard Kyle Lovvorn had eight points and four assists. Owen Smith scored seven points, Spence Florczak six, Logan Sibley four and Blake Young two.
The win over Ohatchee earned the Bulldogs a clean sweep of their home-and-home meetings with Area 10 opponents. Ranburne finished 8-0 in Area 10 play.
Area win No. 7 came on January 24 at home against Woodland. The Bulldogs scored the initial eleven points of the game and won 57-50. Wilson had five points during the opening run, Jay Smith was 4-for-4 at the free throw line and Mark David Smith scored a basket.
Woodland had cut Ranburne’s advantage to 11-4 at the end of the first quarter. At the half, the Bulldogs led 31-20 and it was 40-33 Ranburne after three quarters. Bailey said his team had 16-point leads twice during the game but needed some late free throws after the Bobcats got within two points at 52-50. Of the 17 points Ranburne scored in the fourth quarter, 13 came at the foul line. Wilson was 4-for-4 in the fourth, Lovvorn 4-for-5, Mark David Smith 4-for-6 and Jay Smith 1-for-2. Overall, the Bulldogs were 24-for-32 from the charity stripe.
“We didn’t shoot very well from the outside. Had we not made free throws, they might have beaten us,” Bailey said.
Mark David Smith finished with 18 points. Wilson and Jay Smith scored 11 points apiece. All of Lovvorn’s points came at the line where he was 7-for-9 for the game. Owen Smith scored five points. Dylan Wiggins had Ranburne’s only 3-point basket and a free throw for four points. Florczak scored one point.