Written by Michael Florek
SGP wears down Lincoln, 49-40 in DISD Boys Coca-Cola final
The crowd couldn’t blame South Grand Prairie for being a little sleepy at the beginning of Saturday night’s DISD Coca-Cola Invitational championship game against Lincoln.
Due to previous games going late, the matchup didn’t tip-off until 9:30 p.m. at Ellis Davis Field House.
South Grand Prairie started slow and didn’t reach 50 points, but it did enough to defeat Lincoln, 49-40, and take home the title.
“I happy to win, but we didn’t play a very good basketball game,” South Grand Prairie coach Brandon Bennett said. “I think our kids were a little tight. … I think [starting at 9:30] throws the rhythm off too. We had a shoot around this morning at 10.”
Lincoln’s Rodney Allen put South Grand Prairie in catch-up mode seconds into the game, scoring off the opening tip and hitting a fadeaway jump shot on his next trip down the floor.
South Grand Prairie (20-2) calmed down and took a 19-15 halftime lead. Just after the midway point in the third, Lincoln’s Derrick Neal came down the floor, put a quick shake on a defender, and went to the basket to give Lincoln the lead, 28-27. It was the last Lincoln had, and it wouldn’t last long.
South Grand Prairie’s Ben Emelogu, a Virginia Tech signee, responded with a drive of his own on the next possession, setting off a stretch of eight straight points for his team. South Grand Prairie would end up with a 13-2 run that extended until there was about five minutes left in the fourth.
It was simply too big a deficit and too little time for Lincoln.
Emelogu had 11 of his game-high 18 points after Lincoln took its last lead.
“I kept forcing it during the tournament,” Emelogu said. “They just told me to let the game come to me. I just tried to get offensive rebounds, penetrate, get and-1s.”
Carter 65, Sachse 57: Carter overcome a slow start to defeat Sachse in the third-place game.
Multiple missed shots left Carter with just six points in the first quarter as it trailed by seven.
Jeremy Combs and Xavier Hodge led the comeback effort — tying for game-high honors with 16 points. Sachse’s James Mayden came off the bench and had 14 points in the losing effort.
Carter erased the deficit and jumped out to a comfortable lead with a 14-2 run through the end of the second and beginning of the third quarter.
Follow Michael Florek on Twitter at @michaelflorek.