The East Jackson boys’ basketball team pulled off a commanding win last Friday when the Eagles defeated rival Jackson County, 65-43.
The Eagles got off to a strong start, outscoring the Panthers 16-9 in the first quarter. Afterwards, the momentum never ceased.
East Jackson outscored the Panthers in every quarter and secured a region win and county bragging rights.
“It was a great atmosphere and both schools brought good crowds and were into the game from the start,” said East Jackson coach Brian Turner. “Our hard work the previous two games really paid off and we did a much better job of defending and rebounding against a much larger Jackson County team.”
Casey Reed led the Eagle scoring effort with 15 points. Nathan Crumley added 14 and Tyree Rakestraw posted 11.
The region win comes as a relief to the Eagles, after dropping a game to Hart County earlier in the week.
After keeping it a close game in the first quarter, Hart eventually pulled away, blowing out the Eagles 79-44.
“The score was actually 23 to 21 after the first, but our defense was never there for the entire game and our offense went stale with it,” said Turner. “We did a poor job of transition defense, protecting the paint, and rebounding. This game sent us back to the basics for our practices Wednesday and Thursday.”
Nathan Crumley led the Eagle offense against Hart County, posting 13 points.
The Eagles now sit at 3-3 in region play, and face a stretch of seven region matchups before final seeding for the 8-AAA tournament.
“I was very proud of how our kids responded after the loss on Tuesday,” said Turner. “We have to continue to focus on the defensive end over the next several weeks as the region tournament gets closer.”
The Eagles traveled to Franklin County on Tuesday but details were unavailable at press time.
East Jackson hosts North Oconee on Friday, Jan. 18 at 8:30 p.m.