DACULA — The Gainesville boys used a 14-0 run to start the third quarter to blow open a close game en route to an 83-56 win over Apalachee Friday night in the semifinals of the Region 8-AAAAAA Tournament at the Dacula gym.
Apalachee hung tough with the Red Elephants trailing just 22-17 after one quarter and 41-33 at halftime. But Gainesville used the big run to outscore the Wildcats 31-9 in the third quarter to blow the game open.
Gainesville forced 25 Apalachee turnovers with 10 coming during the decisive run.
KJ Buffen led four Gainesville scorers in double figures with 14 points. KaJuan Hale added 13 points, Xavier had 12 points and 6 assists, and Rafael Rubel had 10 points for the Red Elephants. Bailey chipped in with 9 points and a team-high 7 rebounds.
As a team Gainesville dished out 19 assists.
Gainesville will take on Dacula, a 64-59 winner over Lanier in the other semifinals, in Saturday's 7:45 p.m. championship game.
WINDER-BARROW GIRLS 55,
Sickness and injury forced the Gainesville girls to play with just five players in the semifinals and were worn down by the top-seeded Lady Bulldoggs.
Winder-Barrow opened the game with an 18-6 run and took a 32-12 lead into halftime. The Lady Bulldoggs blew it open with an 18-5 third quarter.
Latrice Perkins led Winder-Barrow with 14 points. Olivia Nelson-Ododa added 12 points for the Lady Bulldoggs.
Sadie Roach paced Gainesville with 10 points and Tija Blackwell added 8 points.