CENTENARY, Ohio — A great start led to a good finish.
The Gallia Academy boys basketball team stormed out to a 16-3 first quarter advantage and never looked back Friday night during a 58-50 victory over visiting South Point in an Ohio Valley Conference matchup in Gallia County.
The Blue Devils (7-12, 5-7 OVC) never trailed in the contest as the hosts received 10 points from Wes Jarrell in the opening canto, which allowed GAHS to secure an early double-digit lead. Jarrell followed with eight points as part of a small 15-14 run that gave the Blue and White a comfortable 31-17 cushion at the break.
The Pointers (7-11) limited Jarrell to just seven points in the second half, but the Blue and Gold were never in a position to threaten the hosts down the stretch. SPHS made a small 14-12 third quarter run to whittle the lead down to 43-31, then ended regulation with a 19-15 run to wrap up the three-possession outcome.
The Blue Devils — who avenged a 64-56 setback at South Point back on January 9 — netted 11-of-17 free throws in the fourth quarter to help seal the eight-point triumph.
Gallia Academy netted only one of its 21 field goals from behind the arc and also went 15-of-25 at the free throw line for 60 percent. Jarrell led the hosts with a game-high 25 points, followed by Kole Carter with 13 points and Devin Henry with six markers.
Justin McClelland was next with five points, while Miles Cornwell and Evan Wiseman each contributed three points to the winning cause. Drew VanSickle rounded out the Blue and White tally with two markers.
The Pointers made six of their 18 field goals from three-point territory and also went 8-of-14 at the charity stripe for 57 percent. Elijah Adams paced the guests with 12 points, followed by Jared Whitt with 11 points and Tayshaun Fox with 10 markers.
Douglas Staten and Chris Woodard were next with six points apiece, while Logan Wade wrapped things up for SPHS with five markers.
Gallia Academy will play in its final home game of the 2016 campaign on Tuesday when it hosts Fairland in an OVC matchup at 6 p.m.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.