Second-ranked North Cobb held No. 5 Hillgrove without a field goal over the game’s final 11 minutes and rallied from a nine-point deficit in the fourth quarter for a 48-42 victory in the Region 4-AAAAAA boys basketball championship Saturday at Marietta.
Hillgrove led 27-13 at halftime and was up by 12 after Keith Ray’s steal and dunk with 3:04 to play in the third quarter. But the Hawks did not make another field goal the rest of the game, and North Cobb chipped away at the lead.
The Warriors (23-4) got a layup from Lee Moore and a 3-pointer by Dennis Young-Coleman to cut the deficit to 35-28 going into the fourth quarter, and it became a free-throw shooting contest from there.
Jon Beausejour gave North Cobb its first lead of the game at 39-37 on a 3-pointer with 2:38 to play, and the Warriors never trailed again. North Cobb was 13-for-20 on free throws in the fourth quarter, including 9-for-12 in the final 1:42. Hillgrove (23-4) made 7 of 11 free throws in the final quarter.
Young-Coleman and Moore led North Cobb with 12 points each, all of which came in the second half. Ray and John Franklin, who had Hillgrove’s two second-half field goals, led the Hawks with 10 points each.
North Cobb was playing without two starters as forward Jordan Neff and guard Saxon Steele sat out with injuries. Steele is out for the remainder of the season with a knee injury. Neff injured his ankle in the final game of the regular season and missed the region tournament, but the Warriors are hoping to have him available next week in the state tournament.
Hillgrove (42): Screen 4, Brown 5, Castlin 9, Jo. James 4, Franklin 10, Ray 10, Southwell 2, Sexton.
North Cobb (48): Young-Coleman 12, Moore 12, J. Beausejour 8, Everage 3, Jacobs 2, Jordan 4, D. Beausejour 5, Woodard 2, Williams.