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Late surge lets Bulldogs bite Tigers

By By BRUCE HIXON – Sports Editor
Give a team enough opportunities and sooner or later they will snatch victory away.
Eight fourth quarter turnovers and two missed front end of one-and-ones finally opened the door for the host Andalusia Bulldogs to grab a 54-51 victory away from the T.R. Miller Tigers Friday.
T.R. Miller (2-2) led virtually the entire game until O'Darius James' three-point play with 22 seconds left put the Bulldogs on top.
The Tigers had as much as an eight-point lead in the fourth quarter and still led 51-46 after a bucket by Wade Jackson with 4:01 left. T.R. Miller never scored again.
The fourth quarter turnovers and missed free throws the Tigers had symbolized their performance in that area for the entire game. T.R. Miller had 20 turnovers as compared to just nine for Andalusia. The Tigers were just seven-for-15 from the free throw line for the game with three misses on the front end of one-and-ones.
Jackson did his best to put the Tigers in position to win, especially in the first half where he scored 14 of his game high 22 points. The junior guard had a three-point play, a baseline jumper and a shot from the wing in the first quarter. T.R. Miller had as much as a six-point lead in that frame although a baseline jumper by Jacob Cauley at the first quarter buzzer put Andalusia up 17-16.
Jackson added seven more points in the second quarter, the last of which gave T.R. Miller a 27-25 lead with just over a minute left in the half. The Tigers would remain in front 30-27 at halftime.
T.R. Miller opened up a five-point lead on three occasions in the third quarter, but was unable to widen it any farther. The Tigers got a kind bounce at the end of the frame when Kelly Stallworth's shot from just outside the lane bounced on the rim four times before it fell through to give T.R. Miller a 40-36 lead.
Buckets by Jordan Knight and Brandon Andrews in the opening minute of the fourth quarter extended the Tigers' lead to a game high bulge of 44-36.
Andalusia gradually whittled away at the gap. A key play was a steal and layup by D'Andre Wright with 3:22 left that trimmed the Tigers' lead to 51-48.
Over the next two minutes Andalusia's Kevin Huff and Wright both hit one of two free throw attempts to narrow the lead to 51-50, while Jordan Knight and Lucas missed front ends of one-and-ones on the other end.
T.R. Miller had a chance to tie the game after James' three-point play, but a desperation inbounds pass to Corey Cunningham led him inside the arc on a shot attempt that came up empty.
T.R. Miller's junior varsity suffered its first loss of the season Friday when Andalusia rallied in the waning moments for a 30-27 victory.
Terry Hetherington led T.R. Miller (3-1) with 12 points, while Teras Fountain added seven.
The Tigers open up their portion of the Escambia County Tournament at Flomaton Thursday against the host Hurricanes at 7:30 p.m.
At Andalusia
T.R. Miller 16 14 10 11 – 51
Andalusia 17 10 9 18 – 54
T.R. MILLER (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) Jackson 6-2-4-22; Brooks 2-1-2-9; Andrews 3-1-0-9; Jor. Knight 4-0-0-8; Stallworth 1-0-1-3 (Totals: 16-4-7-51)
ANADLUSIA (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) O. James 6-0-4-16; Wright 4-0-1-9; N. Johnson 3-0-2-8; J. Johnson 4-0-0-8; Cauley 2-0-0-4; Taylor 2-0-0-4; L. James 1-0-2-4; Huff 0-0-1-1 (Totals: 22-0-10-54)
Junior varsity
T.R. Miller 5 11 3 8 – 27
Andalusia 9 8 5 8 – 30
T.R. MILLER (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) Hetherington 4-1-1-12; Fountain 2-0-3-7; Hodges 3-0-0-6; Payne 1-0-0-2 (Totals: 10-1-4-27)
ANDALUSIA (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) Berry 5-0-2-12; Johnson 3-0-0-6; Byrd 2-0-0-4; Fengin 2-0-0-4; Haslip 1-0-1-3; Cowan 0-0-1-1 (Totals: 13-0-4-30)
Tigers edge Northview
The Tigers climbed above the .500 mark for the first time this season Tuesday when they hung on to edge the visiting Northview Chiefs 45-42.
The game had four lead changes and five deadlocks during the first three quarters before a 10-0 run by T.R. Miller proved to be decisive.
A bucket by Wade Jackson late in the third quarter snapped the final tie at 29-29 and propelled the Tigers to the decisive stretch.
Another basket by Jackson followed by two free throws by Brandon Andrews and field goals by Laine Lucas and Terrelle Brooks capped off the 10-0 run early in the fourth quarter and put the Tigers up 39-29.
Northview battled back and pulled within 42-40 when Courtney Whatley drained a three-pointer with 1:55 left.
While the Tigers were a modest 14-for-24 from the free throw line, which included three misses in the final 90 seconds, they did get two charity tosses from Wade Jackson and one by Brooks during that span to help seal the deal.
T.R. Miller had as much as an eight-point lead during the first half. That margin came ale tint he first half when a fastbreak bucket by Jordan Knight put the Tigers up 23-15.
Led by the presence of 6-6 senior transfer Cedric McKinley, who led all scorers with 16 points, the Chiefs rallied in the third quarter to tie the game at 25-25, 27-27 and again at 29-29.
T.R. Miller's junior varsity had little trouble downing Northview, as it rolled past the Chiefs 51-18.
Terry Hetherington knocked in 18 points to pace the Tigers, while David Payne just missed double figures with nine.
At T.R. Miller
Northview 11 8 10 13 – 42
T.R. Miller 12 13 8 14 – 45
NORTHVIEW (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) McKinley 6-0-4-16; Myles 4-0-0-8; Simpson 3-0-0-6; Whatley 1-1-0-5; Austin 0-1-0-3; Yuhasz 1-0-0-2; Kirkland 1-0-0-2 (Totals: 16-2-4-42)
T.R. MILLER (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) Jackson 4-1-3-14; Andrews 2-0-6-10; Brooks 2-0-2-6; Jo. Knight 3-0-0-6; Lucas 2-0-0-4; Cunningham 1-0-2-4; Stallworth 0-0-1-1 (Totals; 14-1-14-45)
Junior varsity
Northview 5 4 5 4 – 18
T.R. Miller 14 13 11 13 – 51
NORTHVIEW (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) Lewis 3-1-0-9; Barnes 3-0-1-7; Sanders 1-0-0-2 (Totals: 7-1-1-18)
T.R. MILLER (2FG-3FG-FT-TP) Hetherington 6-1-3-18; Payne 4-0-1-9; Arauz 1-1-2-7; Lane 1-0-3-5; Hodges 2-0-0-4; Watson 2-0-0-4; Fountain 1-0-0-2; Powell 1-0-0-2 (Totals: 18-2-9-51)