Thursday, February 4, 2010
By BARRY BURLESON
Marshall Academy teams made it an enjoyable night for three seniors January 26.
The Lady Patriots and Patriots routed Lee (Ark.) as Emily Burk, Caleb Byrd and Jake Omedeo played their last games on the MA basketball court.
The MA girls were in full control, 28-6, at the half and never looked back as they dropped the Lady Cougars 56-20.
“It was good to have a game where we could relax early and enjoy each other,” coach Craig Dailey said. “It has been an extremely tough schedule – not a lot of these nights.”
Callie Clanton was on fire. She scored 21 points. Emma Elgin added 12. All eight Lady Pats scored.
The Marshall Academy girls hit nine three-pointers in the non-district game.
“Callie was lifting us up from the three-point line and attacking the goal well,” he said. “Emma is really establishing herself as a major offensive threat.
“Chelsey (Gilliam) had one of her best games of the year, really aggressive on the offensive end.”
But the game last week was a night to honor the team’s lone senior, Burk.
“Emily’s senior night was sad, but with a lot of happy memories,” Dailey said. “She’s had a tremendous career and has done everything I’ve asked of her. I couldn’t be prouder of the player and most importantly the wonderful young lady she has become.”
The Lady Patriots improved to 13-15 overall. They will enter this weekend’s District 1-AA Tournament at Indianola as the third seed (3-5).
The MA boys had an even easier win Tuesday of last week. They clobbered the Cougars 73-25.
The Patriots led 13-1 in the early going and 24-7 at the end of the first quarter. It was 48-14 and 60-21 after three periods.
Jake Omedeo had as many points as the entire Lee team. He scored 25. Caleb Byrd added 11.
Dailey had high praises for his two seniors.
“It was a good sendoff for Jake,” he said. “His evolution as a basketball player has been one of my greatest success stories in player development. From riding the pine as a freshman and sophomore to being a huge contributor on a potential state contender is amazing.
“Caleb is one of a few three-year starters since I’ve been here and his contributions over those three years have been tremendous. His three-point range and scoring ability have made be a better coach, but the type man he has become is one of my greatest joys.”
He also praised the offensive production of Taylor Maurey, Chase Ferrell and Jordan Wyke in the 48-point win over the Cougars.
“They came out early and took care of business,” Dailey said. “They got all their points in the first half and allowed me to play a lot of people and give the seniors a sendoff.”
The Patriots, ranked fourth in Class AA, improved to 20-6 overall. They will go into this weekend’s district tournament as the top seed (7-1).
Ranked ahead of the MA boys in the state standings are Brookhaven, first; Hillcrest, second; and Bowling Green, La., third. River Oaks, La., is fourth.
MA teams closed the regular season with a trip to Class AAA Jackson Academy Tuesday of last week.
Both the Lady Patriots and Patriots will play Friday and Saturday in the semi-finals of the district tourney at Indianola Academy.
The girls will play North Delta at 4 p.m. Friday and the boys will meet the Kirk-Indianola winner at 7:45 that night.
The consolation games are set for 2 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. Saturday with the championship games at 4:30 p.m. and 5:45 p.m.
The top three teams (girls and boys) will advance to North State next week at Leake Academy.
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