Seahawks take a tumble in Holiday Classic

Tina Harbuck | 315-4466 | @DestinLogTina |
Ashton Funderburg looks to pass the ball inside for the Northview Cougars while South Walton's Haley Seible tries to block her out. Funderburg scored 10 points for the Cougars in their 51-44 win in the Destin Holiday Classic. TINA HARBUCK/THE LOG

After posting a big win on Day 1, the South Walton Seahawks were toppled 51-44 by the Northview Cougars of Kodak, Tennessee, in round two of the Sand Dollar Bracket of the Destin Holiday Classic played at Destin Middle School.

South Walton was one of 16 teams from throughout the Southeast playing the tournament that wrapped up Friday night. Final results were not available at press time.

As for Thursday’s game, South Walton missed too many shots against the Cougars.

“No. 1, they’ve got a good team and they hit the big shots and we couldn’t score in the third quarter,” said South Walton Coach Kevin Craig. “We had a five-point lead and then we just couldn’t score.”

Right before the half, South Walton led by five points, but then Northview’s Taylor Cotner-Brabson drained a 3-pointer at the buzzer to make it a two-point game at the half.

Northview came out at the start of the third and hit a free-throw before South Walton’s Georgia Johnson turned in a three-point play. However, that was it for the Seahawks in the third. Northview finished up the period reeling off nine consecutive points topped off by a 3-pointer from Kaitlyn Strange in the final seconds for a 38-33 lead.

At the start of the fourth, South Walton closed it down with Allee Coble making a basket followed by a couple of free throws from Savannah Slade and Shannon Cole. Northview answered with back-to-back 3s from Emma Loy and Strange to widen the gap.

South Walton’s Haley Seible came back with a 3-pointer and Savannah Slade, who scored 13 points in the first half, made the second of two from the line for a 44-41 game.

With less than four minutes to go, Northview put up six-consecutive points. South Walton’s Slade hit one last basket on an offensive rebound and drew a foul for a three-point play. Northview hit one more from the line for a 51-44 finish.

“They made a run and we just couldn’t make shots,” Craig reiterated.

Scoring in double digits for Northview were Strange with 17 points, Loy with 13 and Ashton Funderburg with 10.

South Walton was led by Slade with 18 and Coble with 12.

On day one, South Walton defeated Greenup County Musketeers of Greenup, Kentucky, 52-31.

“It’s very rare that we win a game in a Christmas tournament and get in the winners bracket … so that’s a nice feeling,” Craig said.

The difference in the game against the Musketeers was South Walton outlasted them.

“I thought our depth made the difference,” Craig said. “We played 10 kids the first half … and we wore them down in the second half.

“I don’t think we played that great, but I thought our bench came in and played real well,” he added

In the first quarter, South Walton took an early 5-2 lead with Coble hitting all five for the Seahawks. The Musketeers came back with an inside shot by Maggie Miller, followed by a steal and a layup by Miller and then another drive to the bucket by Miller for an 8-5 go ahead.

The Seahawks turned it up in the last three minutes of the first and put up 11 consecutive points with Slade hitting back-to-back inside shots and couple from the free-throw line. Georgia Johnson put a rebound back for two points. Then Aidan Collins hit three of four from the free-throw line for a 16-8 lead at the buzzer.

In the second quarter, Greenup made a five-point run to close the gap at 20-15 but still trailed. By the half, South Walton was up 24-17.

In the fourth quarter, Coble checked in for the Seahawks and put up six consecutive points before Seible hit her fourth 3-pointer for 47-24 lead. In the last couple of minutes of play, South Walton got everybody in the game with Ellie Wiggins nailing a 3-pointer and Grace Neville putting a rebound back at the buzzer.

“Haley Seible was huge in the third quarter knocking down those 3s,” Craig said. “She couldn’t hit anything the first half.

“I thought Courtney Chesser and Allison Richards did well and I thought Gracie Ricci ran the team well,” he said, after he took Coble out in the first quarter. “And I thought Aiden Collins had a good game off the bench.”

For the game, South Walton was led by Seible with 14 points and Coble with 13.

Tops for Greenup was Miller with 20 points.