Morgan Academy defeats Springwood, advances to Final Four

Published 12:18 am Friday, February 2, 2018

The Morgan Academy Senators defeated Springwood 45-39 Thursday night at the Montgomery Multiplex in the opening round of the AISA Elite 8 State Tournament.

The Senators were the No. 3 seed to start the tournament, and their defense was the key to upsetting Springwood and advancing to the next round.

“It was a defensive battle,” Morgan Academy head coach Mark Knight said. “[Springwood] had two really good athletes, and we shut them down pretty good.”

The Senators have been struggling to hit shots from the field in recent games, according to Knight, but the team was able to make enough to get the win.

“Britton Adams got 13 points, and he hit most of his free throws down the stretch,” Knight said. “That was big, and Milam Turner gave us eight points off the bench all in the fourth quarter.”

The Senators went to a press defense in the fourth quarter that helped create turnovers and turned the game in Morgan’s favor, according to Knight. He also had his players attack the basket more aggressively, which resulted in the Senators getting to the free throw line 12 times in the fourth quarter.

“I thought they showed mental toughness to get through this game tonight,” Knight said. “It was dead even going into the fourth quarter, and we outscored them by six. It was very low-scoring, but mental toughness was a big factor in this win.”

The win places the Senators in the Final Four game on Saturday, Feb. 3 at 11:30 a.m. against Lakeside.

The two teams last faced each other in the opening round of the area tournament. Lakeside won the first match, but the Senators left that game confident that they could challenge them should they meet again.

“They know in the back of their minds that we still haven’t played our best game,” Knight said.