Will brothers face off in final?

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 24, 2004

The Abraham brothers were just four quarters away on Thursday from both getting what they wanted.

A possible R.C. Hatch-Wilcox Central girls’ championship took one step closer to becoming reality Thursday afternoon following the R.C. Hatch Lady Bobcats’ 67-35 victory over Robert E. Lee in the semifinals of the Wilcox Central High School Christmas Tournament.

The Lady Bobcats, coached by Walter Abraham, will face the winner of Thursday night’s other semifinal between Wilcox Central and Charles Henderson. The Wilcox Central Lady Jaguars are coached by John Abraham, who said Wednesday he wanted to coach against his brother in the finals on Friday.

Email newsletter signup

“I don’t think he wants me,” Walter Abraham said. “We’ve beaten (Wilcox Central) already twice this year. We’re just going to try not to give it to them.”

The only thing that the Lady Bobcats gave Robert E. Lee on Thursday was a thorough beating. What has become the team trademark, the Lady Bobcats pressed Lee into submission. Hatch, as it has the entire tournament, quickly made a statement with its 2-2-1 press defense, turning quick steals into easy baskets. Forward Janita Essex slapped the ball away from Lee forward Brittany Hardmon and tossed it to Sierra Miller. The Hatch guard’s three-pointer from the left wing gave the Lady Bobcats a 12-2 lead. Hatch dominated from there and opened a 22-6 advantage after the opening period.

“I didn’t know too much about Robert E. Lee,” Walter Abraham said. “They had a couple of good low post players, so I decided we would go with the 2-2-1 press and break their spirit.”

The Lady Bobcats’ offense wasn’t too bad, either. Sheleta Banks sank a 17-foot jumper from the top of the key and Vinecia Dudley drove the right baseline for a layup that gave Hatch a 30-12 lead. The Lady Bobcats were up 39-18 at intermission.

Not only did Robert E. Lee take a beating on the scoreboard, it also took one on the court. Four Lee players were injured in the game, the most serious injury suffered by Anastasia Bucanan. The backup Lee guard ran into a Hatch player and dropped to the floor, hyperextending her knee. She was taken from the court on a stretcher.