High School Sports

Boys high school basketball: Eufaula defeats Russell County 83-68 in Class 5A Area 4 championship

SEALE, Ala. -- It was Jaylin Robinson's world Monday night and everyone else was just living in it.

The 6-foot junior for Eufaula put on a masterful performance that won't soon be forgotten as he poured in 46 points as the Tigers knocked off Russell County, 83-68, in the boys championship game of the Class 5A Area 4 Tournament.

"We tried several different things to stop (Robinson) and none of them worked," said Russell County coach Sam Moates. "One look we went to slowed him down, but (Marcellas Butler) hit two straight 3-pointers and we had to get out of it."

Eufaula (16-10) led most of the way as Robinson started hot and never let up, scoring at least eight points in every quarter. He scored the Tigers' first 14 points of the game and helped stake Eufaula to a 16-13 lead after one quarter. Russell County (11-3) -- which had a run of eight wins in 10 games snapped -- briefly took a 17-16 lead early in the second quarter on a pair of free throws by Jaylin Rutherford, but Eufaula scored the next 10 points and stretched its lead to 31-19 with 3:19 to go before halftime.

Russell County got back into the game, though, when Robinson picked up his third foul with 2:45 to go in the second quarter. The Warriors used Robinson's absence to close the game with a 15-7 burst to close to within 38-34 at the break. Robinson had 24 points for the Tigers, while Carl Johnson led Russell County with 20 points of his own.

Russell County pulled to within 46-44 on a putback by Byron Johnson with 4:12 left in the third quarter, but Eufaula re-took control of the game by going on a 13-3 run that sent the Tigers into the fourth quarter with a 61-51 advantage. Eufaula then scored the first nine points of the fourth quarter to make it 70-51 and cruised to the area championship from there.

"We just had an off game and Eufaula played really well," said Moates. "We turned the ball over, didn't do a good job of rebounding and didn't get back on defense. All of those areas are ones where we've been having a lot of success in lately."

Robinson was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player, finishing the game with 15 field goals -- including two 3-pointers -- and making 14 straight free throws before missing his final attempt with under a minute to go in the game. DeMarcus Bovier also had 12 points for Eufaula and was named to the All-Tournament Team along with Terion Gates and Butler.

Carl Johnson had 33 points of his own in the loss, making 10 field goals -- including four 3-pointers -- and sinking nine of his 11 free-throw attempts. Trey Lockhart pitched in 11 for the Warriors and was named to the All-Tournament Team along with Johnson and Artavious Porter.

Despite the loss, Russell County will advance to sub-region play Friday, when they travel to either Saraland or No. 4 Jackson. Tipoff time for that game hasn't been set.

"We just have to get back focused," said Moates. "I haven't seen or heard a lot about Jackson, but I feel like we've got a shot if we play Jackson. We're just going to have to play one of our better games."

Friday at Russell County

Eufaula 16 22 23 22--83

Russell Co. 13 21 17 17--68

Eufaula (83)

DeMarcus Bovier 12, Gates 6, Butler 7, Brown 4, Jaylin Robinson 46, Tyson 3, Paige 5. Totals 29 20-28 83.

Russell County (68)

Rutherford 6, Trey Lockhart 11, Porter 6, Carl Johnson 33, Parker 4, B. Johnson 2, Hill 6. Totals 23 16-21 68.

Records: Eufaula 16-10, Russell County 11-13; Next: Russell County at Saraland/Jackson (Sub-Regional Round) Friday Time TBD.