If defense like this becomes a trend, it could mean good things for the Evans High School boys basketball team during the Region 3-AAAA tournament.
Evans managed one of its lowest scoring outputs of the season Tuesday against Westside, but used stingy defense to shut down the Patriots and solidify a 49-34 victory.
Evans scored its fewest points since a 51-46 loss to Josey two months ago, but made its defense the difference.
Senior Tony Davis scored 21 points to lead all scorers, and Keenan Mason came off the bench to add nine, including five in a row during a critical third-quarter stretch.
"Offensively, it was sloppy both ways, but defensively we just did a great job in the second half," Evans coach Kevin Kenny said.
"We are a very good defensive team when we set our mind to it. High school kids are going to have turnovers -- that's part of basketball -- but defense should be constant every night."
Kenny said the Knights improved in two areas during the final two quarters: getting back to prevent transition baskets, and denying passes around half court.
They allowed only two field goals (Allen Elmore's layup and Dominique Thomas' 3-pointer) and five free throws in the second half.
Evans entered the game at 13-5 in the region, tied with Glenn Hills and Josey. With only a region game against Hephzibah remaining after Tuesday, the Knights appeared safe to grab either the second or third seed after Glenn Hills beat Josey 47-37.
The second and third seeds are more appealing, because teams in those spots avoid a potential meeting with top seed and region-unbeaten Richmond Academy until the championship game.
Playing to improve its seed for the Region 3-AAAA tournament, Westside scored only 10 points in the second half of its second consecutive defeat.
The Patriots allowed 13 consecutive points after tying the game midway through the third quarter and trailed by double digits for the final 10 minutes.
The loss likely locked Westside into the fifth seed, meaning it will need to upset a higher seed to earn a state playoff berth. The region tournament is next week at Richmond Academy.
Elmore, limited with a thigh bruise, led the Patriots with 10 points, three days after not scoring in his team's 66-62 loss to Richmond Academy because of the injury.
The Patriots have given Richmond Academy their two toughest games of the season, but have now lost to four other teams in the region.
The Augusta Chronicle staff writer Matt Middleton contributed to this report.
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