WEAVER — Ohatchee’s Bryant Ginn says Jordan Lowe reminds him of himself in that he’s a “very hard-working guy.”
What better time for Lowe, a senior, to play arguably his best game of the season as Ohatchee knocked off Wellborn 59-33 in the Class 3A, Area 9 boys semifinals. With the win, Ohatchee will face Weaver, which won the area’s regular-season title, on Thursday at 6 p.m. Making the finals clinches a spot in the sub-regionals. This is just the second time in Ginn’s four years as the Indians’ boys head coach that his squad has advanced out of the area tournament.
Lowe, who normally plays a slim number of minutes, was on the court for nearly 12 against the Panthers and finished with 10 points, seven rebounds, three steals and two assists. He saw an increase in playing time with sophomore Aaron Moore (illness), Evan Keller (injury) and Briley Hale (injury) out.
“Lowe has always had great post moves,” Ginn said. “He’s a hard-working kid and reminds me on myself — not very athletic but has great feet. We’ve always known that about Jordan. He stepped up and played well tonight, because we had to have him.”
Listed as 6-foot-0, Lowe did more than just what a typical big man does in high school basketball, though. On several occasions, he fought for 50-50 balls to give Ohatchee extra possessions. He blocked out opponents to grab rebounds and looked to make the best decision when a basketball was in his hands.
With 2:43 left in the second quarter, Carson Stone passed the ball to a posted-up Lowe, then immediately cut to the basket. Lowe, with his back to the basket, threw a backward bounce pass to Stone, who made the basket to give the Indians a 23-11 lead.
“I thought I did OK tonight,” Lowe said. “I could’ve played better defensive, but I did all right. This is one of the better games I’ve played this year, but, with Coach Ginn, if you don’t play defense, he won’t put you on the court.”
To Lowe’s credit, the defense was there for Ohatchee all night as Wellborn made only 12 field goals, including four 3-point baskets. The Panthers shot 25 percent from the floor and 18 percent from behind the 3-point arc. Of the six Wellborn players who scored, only Eric Johnson (16) had more than four points.
“The biggest thing about tonight was the guys who stepped up for us can do it, they just have to have confidence,” Ginn said. “That’s my thing, if you can take care of the ball and play good defense, the rest will take care of itself.”
Ohatchee’s other top performers:
—Bailey Tillison, 11 points, seven rebounds, two blocks
—Domonique Thomas, eight points, six rebounds, three assists
—Stone, eight points, five rebounds, two steals
Wellborn’s other top performers:
—Austin Cooper, 11 rebounds, four points
—Khavion Wesley, four points, two steals
—Jeremiah Nolen, five rebounds, three points
Class 5A, Area 10 boys: Clay Central 71, Cleburne County 32: Clay Central (20-6) advanced to play Talladega in Thursday’s Area 10 championship game.
Clay Central’s top performers:
—Jamal Williamson, 13 points
—Quan McKinney, 14 points, eight rebounds
Class 5A, Area 13 girls: Alexandria 49, Etowah 32: Alexandria (18-8) clinched a spot in the sub-regional round and advanced to the Area 13 finals, which will be Friday at 6 p.m. against Boaz.
—Brie Bradford, 19 points
—Destiny Heathcock, eight points
Class 3A, Area 10 boys: Glencoe 61, Pleasant Valley 57: At Piedmont, a scoring lull in the second and third quarters spoiled Pleasant Valley’s bid to upset Glencoe in the semifinals. The Raiders led 12-4 after one quarter and won the fourth 19-13. The Yellow Jackets won the second quarter 24-14 and the third 20-12. Glencoe held an apparently comfortable 54-45 lead with four minutes to play but Pleasant Valley chipped away and trailed just 59-57 with 1:03 to play. Ryan Chambless' first Pleasant Valley team finished 5-22.
Pleasant Valley’s top performers:
—Caden Turner, 22 points
—Ethan Johnson, 16 points
—Josh Ballew, nine points on three 3-point baskets
Glencoe’s top performers:
—Brandon Bishop, 13 points
—Collin Roberts, 12 points,
—Jakeb Amberson, nine points
Class 4A, Area 12 girls: Jacksonville 53, Cherokee County 49: At Hokes Bluff, Jacksonville upset Cherokee County in the semifinals after the Warriors had won both regular-season meetings. The Golden Eagles led 14-8 when the first quarter ended, 31-23 at halftime and 41-32 after three. Jacksonville (19-6) meets Hokes Bluff for the tournament championship Friday at 6 p.m.
Jacksonville’s top performers:
—Kayla Broome, 14 points, seven rebounds, four assists
—Kyra Williams, 10 points, four rebounds, four steals
—Essence Hutchinson, nine points, four assists, four rebounds
—Brenna Stone, six points, six rebounds
—Aniya Jefferson, eight points, five rebounds
—Elizabeth Poe, nine rebounds, three points
Class 1A, Area 10 girls: Spring Garden 95, Jacksonville Christian 32: At Spring Garden, the Panthers led 32-2 after one quarter and advanced to meet Sacred Heart, a 64-40 winner over Donoho, in Friday’s championship game. The Panthers, ranked No. 1 in the final ASWA rankings, are 26-3.
Spring Garden’s top performers:
—Lexy Adkison, 12 points, 10 rebounds
—Tiyonna Rogers, 15 points, six rebounds
—Madison Jennings, 15 points, four steals
—Abbey Steward, 14 points
Jacksonville Christian’s top performers:
—Briah Cupp, 18 points, five 3-point baskets
—Sidney Hancock, eight points
Trinity Christian 65, Lawrence County Christian 46: In a tiebreaker to see who goes to the state tournament, Trinity Christian won and now will travel to Union Springs and face Conecuh Spring Christian.
Trinity Christian’s top performers:
—Johnny Goodwin, 17 points, seven rebounds
—Caleb Smith, 36 points, 16 rebounds