MONTICELLO — Monticello head coach Wayne Sherrer wasn’t sure how his players would respond to Saturday’s loss to Little Rock Central when the Billies took on Drew Central on Monday.
After the first quarter, he probably still wasn’t sure as his team led just 8-4.
It took the Billies a quarter to find themselves, but they eventually pulled away for a 64-42 win over the Pirates in the third-place game of the Commercial Bank Holiday Tournament at Arkansas-Monticello’s Steelman Fieldhouse.
“I wasn’t sure after such a disappointing loss emotionally, how we would be,” Sherrer said. “I didn’t know how our defense would be.
“Saying that, I thought we came out emotionally really well.”
Monticello had a chance to play in Monday’s championship game, but lost a three-point lead in the final minutes against Central.
“Our guys were really down after the loss,” Sherrer said. “They felt like they had control and let it get away from them.”
Early on, it looked as though the loss was still weighing on the Billies’ (8-3) mind as they managed just eight points in the opening 8 minutes.
Monticello, though, started to roll in the second quarter behind the play of Sadaeys Miller, who scored nine points in the period. Despite five second-quarter points from Migeal Strong, Drew Central (7-7) trailed 27-13 at halftime.
Twelve points from D.J. Franklin in the third quarter helped Monticello take a 47-30 lead into the fourth.
With both teams emptying their bench, the Billies outscored the Pirates 17-12 in the final quarter.
The 22-point final margin showed improvement for Drew Central, which lost to Monticello at home, 66-34, earlier in the season.
“I thought we looked a lot better,” said Pirates’ head coach C.J. Watson referring to the teams’ first meeting. “I think we were still a little intimidated, for some reason.
“I thought we played good on defense in the first half.”
Tremaine Newton led Drew Central with 10 points, including two three-pointers.
Monticello’s Franklin finished with a game-high 16 points. DeShawn McGowan added 10 points for the Billies, while Miller finished with nine.
Hamburg 66, Rison 40
MONTICELLO — The Lions scored 15-plus points in every quarter to pull away from the Wildcats in the fifth-place game.
Rison scored no more than 11 points in any quarter.
The Wildcats trailed 15-11 after one quarter, 30-20 at halftime and 46-29 heading into the fourth.
Jordan Brown led Rison with 12 points.
Lorenzo Watkins and Trey Miller each finished with 14 points for Hamburg, while Mick Barnes added 11.
Jacksonville 60, Little Rock Central 43
MONTICELLO — A big fourth quarter earned the reigning-5A champions the tournament title.
The Red Devils outscored the Tigers 22-10 in the final period led by Devin Campbell’s 10 points in the quarter.
Campbell finished with a game-high 19 points for Jacksonville, which held quarter leads of 17-11, 27-18 and 38-33.
The Red Devils’ Tyree Appleby added 13 points, including three three-pointers, and Tedrick Wolfe chipped in with 11.
Kelton Wilbert led Central with nine points.