The Winder-Barrow High School boys’ basketball team did not back down from its challenge on Tuesday, Dec. 17.
The Bulldoggs pushed undefeated Walnut Grove, the No. 9 team in the most recent Georgia Sports Writers Association GHSA Class AAAAA poll, to the final horn before falling 66-61. WBHS (8-3) trailed by 10 points after the third quarter but got as close as four points on three occasions in the final two minutes.
Tyreek Perkins finished with a team-high 23 points while Isaiah Nelson-Ododa added 13. Ahmad Scott finished with 11 points for the Bulldoggs.
“I was proud of our fight and our effort,” said Bulldogg coach Travis McDaniel. “It was a heavyweight fight between two good teams. We got behind but never gave up.”
Walnut Grove (10-0) led by seven points after the first quarter but WBHS rallied for a one-point advantage (34-33) at halftime. The visiting Warriors went on a 21-10 run in the third quarter.
“They have five very good guards,” McDaniel said. “There is a reason they are 10-0 and ranked in the state.”
The Bulldogg coach noted his team only had 10 offensive rebounds, way below its season average.
“We will learn from this game,” McDaniel said. “It should help us down the road.”
It was the second victory by Walnut Grove against WBHS this season. The Warriors took a 70-57 win in November.
The Bulldoggs were coming off a pair of weekend victories that ran their winning streak to five games. They beat Monroe Area 62-56 at home on Friday, Dec. 13. Perkins had 23 points and 6 assists, while Nelson-Ododa recorded a triple-double with 11 points, 12 rebounds and 10 blocks. Cam Stillwell had 13 points and 5 boards in that game.
Winder-Barrow had four players finish in double figures in a 73-48 win at Madison County on Saturday, Dec. 14. Nelson-Ododa had 12 points, 14 rebounds and 4 blocks. Max Brown and Scott scored 12 and 11 points, respectively, and Stillwell had 10 points, 5 steals and 5 assists.
LADY BULLDOGGS ROLL PAST WALNUT GROVE
The WBHS girls had matters in hand early in their matchup with Walnut Grove on Tuesday. Daisia Stillwell scored 19 points while teammate Taniyah Parrish added 13 points as the Lady Bulldoggs moved above .500 with a 58-19 win.
WBHS (6-5) jumped out to a 22-5 lead after the first quarter and never looked back. The Lady Bulldoggs led 36-10 at halftime.
“Our challenge tonight was to have control from the start,” coach Kimberly Garren said. “We also wanted to run our offense effectively and cause turnovers with our press.”
Keonna Hunter also finished in double figures with 10 points.
The WBHS teams will host Clarke Central Friday, Dec. 20, at 7 p.m. and will travel to Prince Avenue Christian on Saturday, Dec. 21, at 6 p.m.
For the Lady Bulldoggs, Garren said the team goal is to be 8-5 going into the Christmas break. Garren said her team has been without its complete starting lineup for several games due to various injuries.