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Skins basketball take down opponents following Christmas holiday, region play on tap
Anderia Jackson
Anderia Jackson (21) attempts layup against New Hampstead's Makayla Gray (2) - photo by Gerald Thomas III


PEMBROKE, GA -- Bryan County’s girls hadn’t played in 10 days and had gotten time off for Christmas so it was only to be expected they would be a little rusty. And they were – in the first half.

The Lady Redskins, despite some erratic offensive play, jumped out to an 8-0 lead and held a comfortable 22-4 halftime and went on to post a dominating 46-18 win over visiting Pinewood Christian Academy Tuesday night.

It was Bryan County’s fourth straight win and upped its record to 10-4 going into a Wednesday night game with New Hampstead (7-2).

If there was any concern about the eventual outcome, they were quickly erased in the first minute of the second half when Kenzie Stucker hit on back-to-back baskets following Pinewood (5-4) turnovers.

With Coach Mario Mincey exhorting “ball pressure, ball pressure,” Niyah Shuman got a layup off a steal and with 7:24 on the clock she buried a three-pointer following a steal by Anjanee Johnson.

Just like that it was 31-4. Shuman made one of two free throws at the 4:42 mark and Johnson capped the 12-0 outburst by putting back her own miss. At that point it was 34-4 and just a matter of running out the clock.

“I just wanted us to get a game under our belt,” Mincey said. “Coming off the Christmas break I wanted a game where I could play everyone on the roster.

“It was good to see the freshmen get a chance to get in.”

Shuman led the Redskins with 20 points, hitting five three-pointers, and Kenzie Stucker added 14 as 15 players saw action.

The game with the Panthers was the second on a seven-game homestand for Bryan County. Following New Hampstead, the Redskins will take on Groves on Jan. 4 before returning to Region 3A Public action on Jan. 7 against Portal. Then come home matchups with McIntosh County Academy and Screven County before playing at Jenkins County on Jan. 14.

“It was good to see Stucker get going in the third quarter,” Mincey said. “My biggest thing was the way we played defense in the second half and the way we played the passing zones.”

Even with the offense going through stretches in the first half where it seemingly couldn’t buy a basket the defense, a Bryan County trademark under Mincey, contested every Panthers pass and Pinewood.

This led to turnovers and easy baskets.

After losing to Claxton, who was then ranked No. 9 in the state, the Redskins have knocked off Metter, Effingham County, South Effingham and the Panthers.

The 36-34 win over South Effingham was especially satisfying as the Mustangs beat the Redskins, 54-40, in their second game of the season. Shuman had 16 points and Anderia Jackson added 10 to pace the win.



The surging Bryan County boys’ basketball team took care of business this week as they ran their record to 10-4 with wins over Pinewood Christian Academy and Savannah Classical Academy.

Freshman Elijah Mincey scored 17 points to lead the Redskins to a 63-35 win over Pinewood on Tuesday night and the following night he had 18 to pace a 64-34 victory over SCA with Tanner Ennis adding 10.

While they were games won with ease perhaps the most impressive thing was the Redskins dispatching two lesser opponents as they were expected to do. Bryan County came out and took charge at the outset and never looked back as it was obviously focused on the task at hand.

“I always give them a week off at Christmas,” Coach Brent Anderson said. “We had a real good practice on Monday.

“I’m proud of the guys. These could have been letdown games.”

The Redskins will host a talented Groves (7-1) team on Tuesday night before returning to Region 3A action. Bryan County is 4-1 in region play. The Redskins, Portal (5-3, 2-1) and Screven County (5-4, 2-1) all have one region loss each. 

Other than Mincey’s outbursts the only other player in double figures in the two games was Ennis as Anderson emptied his bench both nights with 10 different players figuring in the scoring.

“At the beginning of the season I thought 10 wins would be a good year with the history here,” Anderson said. “To go into the new year with 10 is amazing.”

Anderson, now in his fifth season, had watched his teams go 5-63 the last three years after going 7-19 his first year. Bryan County is over .500 for the first time in six years and is looking for its first winning season in that span.

Pinewood, a GISA school that was 6-1 going into the contest, was overwhelmed against a Redskins defense that force turnovers which in turn led to easy baskets.

By forcing the action and getting out to a 16-11 first quarter lead which it extended to 35-18 at the half the Redskins were able to play the game at their preferred up-tempo pace.

It also helped that they took a different approach to shot selection, virtually eschewing three-point attempts.

“We were able to turn it into a track meet,” Anderson said. “We wore them down. We’ve been shooting so many threes tonight our objective was to get to the basket.”

That was reflected in the Redskins’ shooting percentage for the game as they shot 49.1 percent in hitting 28 of 57 attempts. The more telling statistic was the starters shooting 56.8 percent as they made 21 of 37 shots.

Mincey made 7-of-9 shots and had a team high five rebounds while Ennis, perhaps the most steady and consistent player on the team, made all four of his field goal attempts and had four rebounds in playing approximately half of the game.

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