Beaufort Academy and Thomas Heyward battled tooth and nail in a SCISA Region 4 boys basketball clash Thursday, but the Eagles had a bit more bite down the stretch.
The atmosphere was electric at BA as the Eagles and Rebels battled it out until the final whistle before BA escaped with a 53-49 home win to keep pace in the region standings.
Braydon Dineen scored 14 points to lead a balanced effort from BA on a night when points were at a premium, while Amarion Wilson added 10. Sully Gay had nine, and Zeke Gonzales contributed eight, including a a huge 3-pointer late.
“We turned it over way too much and did not capitalize inside early enough,” BA coach Nick Field said. “We settled in at halftime and found a grove. Our guards did a better job at taking care of the ball and our bigs did a better job at finishing.”
The energy inside the gym was in full force when the Eagles took an eight-point lead into the fourth quarter, but the Rebels were right behind them. Both teams played physically all night, leading to 39 combined fouls that put both benches in a bind down the stretch.
Brandon Howard scored 15 points, Tony O’Banner added 12, and Preston Hamilton had nine to keep the Rebels in it until the finish.
“Hats off to Thomas Heyward,” BA coach Nick Field said. “We knew they love to play physical bully ball. We prepared our guys to be more physical and to be the big dogs on the playground tonight. I’m very proud of how physically and mentally tough the guys were. We knew going into region play that every night would be difficult and would present its own challenges. I’m proud of the way our guys answered a little adversity.”
Both teams are back in action with key region matchups Monday, as BA (24-5, 4-1) travels to Bethesda Academy and THA (8-4, 3-2) plays at John Paul II.
By Alex Williams / LowcoSports.com student intern
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