By James Gilmore

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 1, 2007

The Selma Times-Journal

Defense played the key role for the Selma High Saints in Friday’s 57-44 win over the visiting Jeff Davis Volunteers.

The Selma defense held Jeff Davis to just one field goal, a 3-pointer for the first seven minutes of the final quarter to pull away and even its season record at 4-4.

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“Our pressure defense was able to cause quite a few turnovers,” said Selma coach Willie Maxey. “We changed our defense to force them to shoot from the outside. Our transition game also helped us a bit.”

The Saints took control of the game in the second quarter, after edging the Vols 12-10 at the end of the first eight minutes of play. Selma outscored Jeff Davis 16-2 to start the quarter to go up by 14 with 2:31 showing on the clock.

Junior center Wendell Lewis, working underneath, netted 13 of the 17 second-quarter points for Selma. He had six blocked shots after two quarters. The Saints took a 29-20 lead to the locker room at the half.

Jeff Davis stayed within striking distance in the third, cutting its deficit as close as five points. The Vols were able to get the free throw line in the quarter, but trailed by seven going into the final stanza.

Selma forced some Jeff Davis turnovers, which led to easy buckets on its offensive end. The Saints pulled away to a double-digit advantage with less then six minutes left to play in the game and cruised the rest of the way, winning 57-44.

“Lewis intimidated us inside,” said Terry Posey, Vols coach. “He blocked shots, attacked the basket strong, and showed how good of player he is.”

Lewis led all scorers with 24 points. He grabbed 13 boards and finished with seven blocked shots. Senior Courtney Carr added 19 points and pulled down a game-high 14 rebounds. Tedrick Owens contributed eight points. Stavar Choice scored a team-high 15 points for Jeff Davis.

The Selma High Lady Saints (6-1) struggled in the first half of its game against the Jeff Davis Lady Volunteers Friday night. They came to life in the second half with defense leading the way and exploded to a 61-40 win.

“We were not playing team ball or defense in the first half,” said Lady Saints coach Anthony Harris. “Jeff Davis out-hustled us in the first half. But we put a little press on, got a couple of steals to turn things around in the second half of the game.”

The Saints led 17-14 after quarter one and held on to a slim 27-25 advantage at the half.

Selma’s defensive pressure created havoc on the Vols offense and held them to one field goal in the third quarter.

The Saints outscored Jeff Davis 15-3 to take a commanding 46-28 lead going into the fourth quarter.

The Vols could only get as close as 12 points, as they still seek their first win of the young season.

Ashley Grimes and Keisha Moore each scored a game-high 14 points for Selma. Kamesha Strong added 12 points.

Ashley Turnipseed led the Vols with 12 points.