The SoBoCo Eagles withstood a 19-4 Hallsville rally in the third quarter, then answered with a 9-2 rally of their own. The Eagles then closed out the Indians in the fourth quarter by hitting 11-14 free throws to win the Southern Boone Classic 68-57 Saturday night.

The tournament championship was the second for the Eagles this season, having won the California Tournament in January. It was the second consecutive Classic title for the Eagles – a first in the tournament’s 35 year history.

The Eagles staked themselves to lead early in the game as Brady Trammell hit a trio of 3-point shots and Rece Gilmore hit a fourth for a first quarter 23-17 lead.

If the capacity crowd thought the Eagles were hot in the first eight minutes, they got a even hotter in the second quarter.

The Eagles started the second period with a Tyson Smith put-back basket, a pair of Sam Stichnote baskets underneath and Smith’s steal and layup that led the Indians to a timeout.

Smith and Stichote remained red-hot after the breather, trading baskets and disrupting Hallsville on the defensive end. Gilmore ended the half with a buzzer-beater 3-point shot to give the Eagles a 40-22 lead at the break.

“The entire first half our defense really clamped down,” said Eagles coach Andy Jahnsen.

~ Read the full story in today’s Journal ~

By Bruce Wallace