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Favorites on to finals

By Stephen Dawkins

Chilton County’s boys and Maplesville’s girls basketball teams were given No. 1 seeds by the coaches in this week’s county tournament.
On Thursday, both teams showed why.
CCHS breezed by No. 4 seed Thorsby, 79-33, and Maplesville overcame a sluggish first half to top Jemison 55-35.
Thorsby pushed Chilton, which wound up winning its seventh consecutive tournament championship, for three periods in last year’s tournament, but the Tigers on Thursday raced out to an 11-2 lead and never looked back.
“I thought we shot the ball better tonight,” said CCHS coach Donnie Hand, whose team was just shy of 50 percent from the field. “We shot today before the game a bunch. We start doing that after the break.”
The Tigers (9-7) led 25-7 at the end of the first period, 45-16 at halftime and 67-30 going into the final frame.
CCHS’s Taylor Hughes filled up the stat sheet to the tune of a game-high 22 points, 11 rebounds, three steals and three assists.
Teammate Josh Williams contributed 19 points, four assists and six steals.
Nelson Williams dished out six assists.
Both Evan Bryan and Andrew Farris scored 10 points for Thorsby.
CCHS plays the winner of Friday’s Jemison-Maplesville game at 6:30 p.m. Saturday for the county championship.
Maplesville’s girls actually trailed No. 5 seed Jemison, 17-14 at halftime, but Ebony Childers stole the ball at halfcourt and finished with a layup to give the Red Devils (8-3) a 29-23 lead with 12 seconds remaining in the third quarter.
Jemison would never threaten again.
In the second half, Maplesville established Childers down low on offense and utilized Zuri Nix’s length at the top of a zone defense to create turnovers and easy baskets.
“We played better defense in the second half, and the shots we were missing in the first half we started making,” coach Eric Bailey said.
Childers scored 13 points and pulled down 19 rebounds. Keshia Bailey also scored 13 points to go along with five steals and five rebounds.
Nix was good for 11 points.
Both members of Jemison’s Mims duo had solid games. Codi posted 14 points, and Kelsey scored 13.
The Devils will play the winner of Friday’s Thorsby-Isabella game at 5 p.m. Saturday for the girls championship.