Beaufort High’s boys kept their playoff hopes alive with an impressive 66-47 home win over Bluffton in the first round of the Region 7-4A tournament Friday, using a huge second quarter to run away and setting up a semifinal showdown at James Island with a shot at the region’s final playoff spot on the line.
Daniel Phares racked up 20 points and nine rebounds to help ensure the Eagles extended his career by at least one more game, while Zyrin Odom posted a double-double with 11 points and 10 boards to lead an outstanding all-around effort from Beaufort. Michael Dennison added 12 points and and six rebounds, and James Dennison had 10 points and eight boards.
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The Eagles led 19-12 after one quarter but broke it open in the second, outsourcing the Bobcats 23-13 in the period. Michael Dennison led the outburst, scoring 10 of his 12 in the quarter, and Odom added six in the period as Beaufort extended the margin to 42-25.
The led continued to grow in the third, as Phares took charge, scoring nine points including an and-one to charged up the bench and the home crowd.
Eric Eastham gave the Bobcats his all in his final high school game, scoring 14 points and trying to keep pace with Beaufort’s balanced attack. DJ Aiken added nine points, and Tre’Von Brown had eight for Bluffton.
Beaufort also excelled at the defensive end, coming away with 14 steals to help the Eagles advance to a semifinal matchup at James Island on Monday.
The Eagles (8-4) would clinch one of the region’s two playoff spots with a win at James Island and a Hilton Head High win over Colleton County in the other semifinal. If the Cougars knock off the Seahawks, who already have clinched a berth by virtue of winning the regular-season title, Beaufort would have to win the tournament to make the postseason.
By Justin Jarrett / Photos by Gabriel Jenkins