Alexander (16-5, 7-3) tipped off the boys game on a 5-0 run and eventually went up 8-2. LaGrange (14-6, 5-4) cut the deficit to a single basket late in the quarter but could not take the lead. A Hassani Gravett 3-pointer with 1:23 on the clock made it a 13-6 game, which is where the score would stay as the second quarter began.
The Cougars took a 10 point lead in the game two minutes into the second when Karim Mawuenyega hit a 3-pointer, putting AHS up 18-8. Four more points, capped by a layup from Lemarcus Frazier made it a 22-8 game, and forced the Grangers coach to call a timeout.
The timeout could not cool off the hot offense Alexander was bringing in the first half and the Cougars went on to take a 15 point lead twice before ending the second quarter up 16, 36-20.
Mawuenyega led all scorers in the first half with 10 points. He hit two 3-pointers. AHS showed a well balanced attack with five players over four points. Mikell Lands scored seven and Gerron Brooks added six. Frazier had four and Cody Worthy had four.
Baron Smith led LaGrange with seven points. Joe Sanders followed with six.
Alexander’s offense continued to devour the LaGrange defense in the third quarter and by the halfway point, AHS had taken a 20 point lead. After the lead was cut to 19, Mawuenyega stepped up and once again knocked down another 3-pointer to put the Cougars up 52-30. LaGrange called a timeout.
AHS did not slow down coming off the break and took a 25 point lead when Gravett hit a 3-pointer with a minute to play.
Even when the Cougars managed to turn over the ball, another AHS player was waiting to get the ball back and put up a basket. The third quarter ended with Alexander leading 57-34.
LaGrange would step up their game in the fourth quarter and cut the deficit to as little as 15 points but it was too little too late for the visiting Grangers.
Mawuenyega wrapped up a big night with 18 second half points for 28 total. He hit six 3’s in the game. Lands followed with nine points and Brooks added eight.
Sanders led LaGrange with 18 points after a big fourth quarter. Smith finished with 10.
In the opening game, the AHS girls (8-13, 4-6) got off to their worst start of the year as the Lady Grangers took a 15-2 lead. The Lady Cougar lone basket in the first quarter came from Deanna Dorsey.
LaGrange (15-3, 5-2) opened the second quarter on a 5-0 run to go up 20-2. Two minutes into the quarter Alexander got on the board once again when Dorsey hit a layup. Over that final six minutes of the first half, the Lady Cougars outscored LaGrange 15-6 to cut the deficit to single digits.
Treasure Matthews led the late first half charge, scoring six of the 15 points on three straight baskets. Dorsey and Rachel Robinson added baskets over the run and Claudia Hester knocked down a 3-pointer for AHS’s 15th, 16th, and 17th points of the game. LaGrange ended the half with a basket for a 26-17 lead. Leading the way for the Lady Grangers in the first two quarters were Steara Mitchell and Brittany Tatum, who netted nine points each. Matthews led AHS with six points.
LaGrange came out in the third and quickly re-established their double digit lead. However, it would not last as both teams battled back and forth to a 10-10 tie by the end of the quarter. The Lady Grangers led 36-27 as the fourth tipped off.
In the fourth, Alexander managed to cut the deficit to seven when Molly Brown hit back-to-back shots with 5:20 to play. A 3-pointer by Robinson pulled AHS to within four, 38-34. LaGrange fought back with four points, going up 42-34 with 3:30 to play. The Lady Grangers added one point to their total and held that lead till the final minute as Alexander struggled to score. A late surge by the Lady Cougars would not be enough as they fell by seven points in the region game.
Matthews led AHS offensively with 10 points. Hester added nine and Dorsey scored eight.
Tatum led LaGrange with 17 points. Mitchell and KaBrenna Smith netted 12 apiece.
The Cougars and Lady Cougars will return to action on Friday when they travel to Sandy Creek. Games start at 6 p.m.