McDONOUGH — Over the weekend, the ninth grade championships kicked off the second half of the season with the Luella Lions’ ninth grade team earning the title over Dutchtown.

Luella kicked off their title run with a victory over Salem High School then another over Hampton in the second day to set up the game against Dutchtown.

For the Bulldogs, it was much the same, an opening victory over Stockbridge set their tone while McDonough was their second opponent to fall.

The rest of the finishers were Woodland, which was named the Consolation Champion after winning over Eagle’s Landing. Hampton placed third overall in the tournament after winning over McDonough High.

The all-tournament team was also announced after the final festivities.All-Tournament Team

London Edmond-Reynolds, Hampton

Jeremy Armour, McDonough

Nick Mason, Eagle’s Landing

Catravious Bigby, Stockbridge

Camani Cobb, Woodland

Jordan Finch, Salem

Adrian Avery, Dutchtown

Nick Dickey, Luella

Tournament Most Outstanding Player

Khalil Bayley, Luella

The Lions’ win marks a future for a rising Luella boys basketball program under Lorenzo Bailey.

“No doubt, the future is bright,” Bailey said. “Winning the ninth grade championship may not mean much to some people but for us, a program who is trying to discover who they are and begin a culture of success, it was major. To see the smiles on the parents and players’ faces. To have the varsity and sub-varsity there to support and celebrate with the team means a lot. To have Coach Neal Bell get his first championship as a head coach is major. It helps change the mindset and make players believe anything is possible. Even if you only have seven players, it only takes five to win a game but it takes a community to win a championship.”

Sports Editor

Graduated from South Carolina State University in 2015. Been with the Henry Herald and Clayton News in two capacities as a sports journalist and interim sports editor.

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