South Walton ousted in two at Hilton Sandestin Beach Blowout

Tina Harbuck

Following Tuesday’s loss, the South Walton Seahawks came back with a vengeance on Wednesday but still fell short 57-56 in overtime to the Davidson of Mobile, Ala., in the Hilton Sandestin Beach Blowout at Freeport.

The first quarter was neck and neck with Davidson holding a 12-11 lead at the buzzer. In the second period, the Seahawks edged ahead putting up 16 point to their nine for a 27-21 advantage at the half.

In the third quarter, Davidson went on a couple of 11-point scoring sprees to pull ahead of the Seahawks 41-34.

In the fourth, South Walton trailed the entire period until they tied it up with 14 seconds left in regulation on a pair of free throws from Allee Coble.

In the four minute overtime, Davidson scored first and stayed a step ahead until the last minute when Gracie Ricci tied it up at 53-53. Davidson’s Jameria Doss hit one from underneath to go up 55-53, but then Ricci drained another 3 with 17 seconds left on the clock for a one-point advantage.

Davidson went down, missed and the ball went out of bounds. With 1 second left on the clock, South Walton went to inbound the ball and Davidson picked it off and Kiara Richard put it up for a buzzer beater and a 57-56 win.

Tops for the Seahawks were Coble with 18 points and Savannah Slade with 16.

Doss was high-point player for Davidson with 22 points. Maggie Robinson scored 10.

On Tuesday, the Seahawks were overpowered by the Blowout defending champions Cookeville Cavs of Tennessee 55-22.

“Early in the game we just got intimidated,” said South Walton Coach Kevin Craig.

“They got very physical with us and we backed down. They are very good and we got exposed on some things,” he said.

“It wasn’t that we weren’t focused today, but when you’re undefeated. You think you can walk on water. We got an eye opener.”

The Seahawks were 16-0 going into Tuesday’s tournament game.

“Tennessee basketball is better than Florida basketball,” Craig said. “But I thought we’d compete better than this.”

But Craig said it’s all about turning negatives into positives.

“It’s how you bounce back from something like that. It’s how you come back from adversity. You can make it a positive or a negative. It’s up to the team.”

Cookeville jumped out to a 14-5 lead in the first quarter and then outscored the Seahawks 17 to 3 in the second for a 31-8 lead at the half. Sydney Bean rained three 3s in the first quarter for the Cavs and Riley Masters tossed in four baskets in the second quarter to set the pace.

Megan O’Neal scored all five for South Walton in the first and two in the second.

In the third quarter, the Cavs continued to dominate. South Walton’s O’Neal scored a basket early on, then Cookeville put up 20 unanswered points on layups and 3-pointers for a 52-10 lead.

In the fourth, South Walton scored 12 with O’Neal knocking down a pair of 3s and Savannah Slade a 3 late in the game.