High School Sports

Suber, Beaufort Academy boys run past Thomas Heyward

Preston Suber felt the effects Tuesday of an illness that sidelined him the previous night.

The Beaufort Academy sophomore guard had suffered from a fever and congestion, brought on by a virus going around school. And Tuesday he found himself short of breath at times and rested on the bench during the first half.

But when needed on the floor the most, Suber ran. He and his Eagles teammates got up and down the floor faster than Thomas Heyward Academy, scoring on the secondary break and running to a 49-38 home victory. The Eagles' win avenged a January loss at Thomas Heyward.

"We didn't really slow down the whole game," said Suber, who led all scorers with 21 points.

Beaufort Academy won a SCISAA Region 1-AA game for the first time since Jan. 7, the last time the Eagles had Bennett Fultz, a senior standout lost for the season with a back injury. The Eagles have learned to play without their senior leader, but Suber said the team still feels his absence.

"We'd be a better team with him," Suber said. "We need a big guy underneath. But guys have stepped up."

Leif Koppernaes provided the extra boost Tuesday. The Eagles' post player scored 14 points and pulled down 12 rebounds.

Beaufort Academy coach Chip Dinkins said his team had not scored a lot of points recently, about 35 points a game, and that it needs the transition points to boost its output. Only four Eagles scored Tuesday, but their intensity on defense impressed their coach. No Thomas Heyward player reached double digits. The Eagles allowed only 12 points in the second half.

Beaufort Academy played a 3-2 pressure zone to try and neutralize Thomas Heyward's shooters and get out quickly on the other end. Rebels guard Logan Mock knocked down a pair of 3-pointers during the second quarter, but the Eagles otherwise executed well, Dinkins said.

"Other than that, I didn't think we ever lost our intensity or focus on defense," Dinkins said. "Take those points out, I thought it was one of our best defensive games of the year."

Beaufort Academy boys 49, Thomas Heyward 38

Thomas Heyward (12-10, 6-5 SCISAA Region 1-AA)-- Logan Mock 8, Don Simmons 8, Joe Laycock 6, Coulter Bergmann 5, Taylor Cowart 4, J.D. Tuten 3, J.A. Malphrus 2, Ryan Day 2.

Beaufort Academy (7-15, 4-9 SCISAA Region 1-AA)-- Preston Suber 21, Leif Koppernaes 14, Jack Griffith 10, Billy Dailey 4.

Thomas Heyward girls 63, Beaufort Academy 35

Thomas Heyward girls basketball coach Gary Mazzanna doesn't need steals from his team's full-court pressure.

That's not always the point, he said.

The purpose of the press is to throw the opposing offense out of rhythm. Forced turnovers are a bonus.

On Tuesday at Beaufort Academy, Thomas Heyward achieved both.

"We were a step quicker," Mazzanna said.

Thomas Heyward improved to 8-2 in SCISAA Region 1-AA. Mazzanna said his team is guaranteed the second seed from the region and will use the final two regular-season games as playoff tune-ups.

The game was the last on the Eagles' region schedule. They finished 7-5, tied for third and earned a playoff spot. Coach Jay Gardner said his team played Thomas Heyward tougher than it had earlier in the season, when the Rebels ran away early.

The Eagles trailed by only four after a quarter and pulled within seven early in the second half. But Thomas Heyward ended the third quarter on a 14-1 run to create a cushion.

"I thought we held our own for three quarters," Gardner said. "You've got to beat their press to beat them. And we didn't always do that."

Thomas Heyward girls 63, Beaufort Academy 35

Thomas Heyward (16-5, 8-2 SCISAA Region 1-AA) -- Kayla Kanavan 19, Jamie Malphrus 18, Caitlyn Cooler 12, Brielle Jungblut 6, Brianna Kelnhoffer 4, Haley Davis 2, Taylor Ernestine 2.

Beaufort Academy (12-10, 7-5 SCISAA Region 1-AA) -- Miranda Weslake 21, Katherine Neal 4, Taylor Vincent 4, Megan DeBardelaben 4, Charlotte Delfosse 2.