DAWSONVILLE — The Dawson County boys staged a dramatic comeback to beat East Hall in overtime to highlight a compelling day of semifinal matchups in the Region 7-AAA Tournament Friday at the Dawson County gym.
The host Tigers trailed by 10 points with three minutes left in regulation and got a game-winning jumper from Cullen Reed with 11 seconds left in overtime to help propel them to a 70-67 win.
In the other boys semifinal, Greater Atlanta Christian needed a big second half to shake off North Hall 75-49 to set up a 7:30 p.m. showdown with Dawson County Saturday in the finals.
In girls semifinal action, East Hall used an 11-2 run over the final four minutes to rally for a 52-45 win over rival North Hall. The Lady Vikings will take on Greater Atlanta Christian in the finals. GAC knocked off Dawson County 58-32 in the other semifinal.
With the wins the East Hall and GAC girls and the Dawson County and GAC boys all secured home court playoff games in the first round of the upcoming state playoffs.
EAST HALL GIRLS 52,
NORTH HALL 43
East Hall held North Hall scoreless over the final three minutes while erasing a 45-43 deficit to rally for a win and secure a berth in the championship game.
The Lady Vikings (16-11) will take on Greater Atlanta Christian in Saturday’s 6 p.m. final.
Ansley Smallwood gave North Hall (14-12) a 45-43 lead on a basket with just over three minutes. But the Lady Vikings hit 7-of-8 free throws in the final two minutes to catch the Lady Trojans and the pull away for the victory.
East Hall led 17-10 after the first quarter but North Hall reclaimed the lead with an 11-0 run capped by a Smallwood basket. Ivey Shadburn got the lead back for East Hall at 22-21 on a 3-pointer and the Lady Vikings eventually took a 28-27 lead into the intermission.
In the third quarter Ansleigh Ferguson gave North Hall a 33-31 lead on a stickback basket. Camilla Howell pushed North Hall’s lead to 38-35 with a 3-pointer early in the fourth quarter.
East Hall answered with a 6-0 run to retake the lead but Howell drained another 3-pointer to tie the game at 41.
Carly Winters finished with 15 points to lead East Hall, eight coming in the pivotal fourth quarter. Tessa Rider 8 points and Maggie Griffin ad 7 points for the Lady Vikings.
Howell poured in 18 points to pace North Hall. Ferguson finished with 16 points, but just three in the second half.
Free throws played a key role. East Hall was 18-of-26 while North Hall was just 7-of-8 from the line for the game.
DAWSON COUNTY BOYS 70 OT,
EAST HALL 67
Cullen Reed hit a jumper with 11 seconds left in overtime to give the Tigers the final lead of the game.
East Hall’s Qua Butler had a chance to tie the game and give the Vikings the lead but missed a pair of free throws with 3 seconds. The Tigers’ Ryan Gallenkamp hit two free throws with 0.5 seconds left to seal it and send them into the championship game.
The Vikings (17-9) had rallied from a 64-61 deficit in overtime to take the lead 67-66 on a Luke Cooper free throw.
Dawson County (15-10) trailed 58-48 with three minutes left in the fourth quarter but staged a furious comeback to tie the game at on a Kane Pelfry basket with 14 seconds left.
The game was nip-and-tuck four three quarters with neither team leading by more than six. East Hall used a 14-4 run in the third and fourth quarters to take a 52-42 lead. The Vikings led 56-44 on a Butler driving layup with four minutes left.
But they couldn’t hold on. Campbell Reed hit a 3-pointer, Cullen Reed hi a pair of free throws, and Pelfry pulled the Tigers within 59-56 with 1:46 left. East Hall had a chance to maintain the lead but missed two front end 1-and-1 free throw attempts during the Tigers’ comeback.
Cullen Reed poured in 23 points to pace Dawson County. Jeremiah Crumpley added 18 points and Campbell Reed had 12 for the Tigers.
GREATER ATLANTA CHRISTIAN GIRLS 58,
DAWSON COUNTY 32
The Lady Tigers were held to just three first quarter points and never recovered in a loss to No. 3-ranked GAC.
The 32 points were the fewest in a game this season for Dawson County (15-11).
GAC (20-4) led 13-3 after the first quarter and took a 30-12 lead into halftime. The Lady Tigers were only outscored 28-20 in the second half but they could never get close enough to threaten the Lady Spartans.
Kaylee Sticker led Dawson County with 11 points.
The Lady Tigers will take on North Hall at 3 p.m. on Saturday in the consolation game.
GREATER ATLANTA CHRISTIAN BOYS 75,
NORTH HALL 49
No. 1-seed GAC outscored North Hall 42-20 in the second half to blow open a close game in the first half.
The Trojans (11-15) trailed 21-13 after the first quarter but closed to within 33-29 by halftime. But the Spartans (22-3) used a 20-8 third quarter to take control.
Hunter McIntosh poured in 24 points to lead GAC.
Noah Holman led North Hall with 10 points. Taylor Hanson added 9 points on three 3-pointers for the Trojans.
FRIDAY’S REGION REGION 7-AAA TOURNAMENT SCORES
East Hall girls 52, North Hall 43
Dawson County 70, East Hall 67 OT
GAC girls 58, Dawson County 32
GAC boys 75, North Hall 49
SATURDAY’S REGION REGION 7-AAA CHAMPIONSHIPS, 3rd PLACE
at Dawson County
North Hall girls vs. Dawson County, 3rd place 3 p.m.
North Hall boys vs. East Hall, 3rd place 4:30 p.m.
GAC girls vs. East Hall, championship, 6 p.m.
GAC boys vs. Dawson County, championship, 7:30 p.m