Columbia downs SWD

By Kerry King

Columbia High School beat Southwest DeKalb High School 63-51 in boys high school basketball Jan. 8.

The Columbia Eagles took control of the game’s early minutes with Mason Lockhart dominating Southwest DeKalb’s interior defense. Lockhart’s 10 points in the first quarter led both teams. He capped off his first quarter performance with a put-back dunk.

Lockhart was also impressive defensively, grabbing several rebounds and altering shots that came his way in the first quarter.

Jalen Boyles knocked down a three for the Southwest DeKalb Panthers to keep Columbia within reach. The first quarter finished 18-8 in favor of the Eagles.

The Panthers found momentum in the second quarter led by Jordan Sanders (5 points) and Kourtney Forrest (7 points).

Sanders had an early three-pointer that would trigger a 13-3 run, culminating in Forrest getting a three of his own to tie the game at 21 points. Columbia’s lead had been wiped away with 3:30 remaining in the first half.

However, Columbia would regain the lead before halftime thanks to the five points from DaQuavious Harrison. Columbia led 27-23 at halftime.

The third quarter began with both teams exhibiting strong individual performances.

Harrison of Columbia got things started with an dunk that was followed by a three-pointer from Morgan Johnson of Southwest DeKalb. Harrison and Johnson then exchanged threes (one for Harrison and two for Johnson), and the Eagles maintained their lead 34-32.

Southwest Dekalb then grabbed its first lead of the night thanks to a three-pointer from Forrest. Forrest, a Southwest DeKalb senior and team co-captain, was one of the driving forces behind the Panthers’ comeback. He had thirteen points by the end of the night.

Despite the turnaround from Southwest DeKalb, Columbia’s once again led at the conclusion of the quarter 45-44.

The Eagles went on a quick 4-0 start to the fourth quarter, but a mid-range bucket and then a three-pointer from Sanders tied the game up again.

After both teams exchanged two points, Columbia went on a 6-0 run to make the score 57-51 with 2:39 left in the contest. The Eagles would not relinquish the lead again.

The Panthers were forced to foul, and Columbia saw out the deserved win. Leading scorers for both teams were Lockhart (16 points), Harrison (12), and Rashaad Headges (12) for Columbia, and Forrest (13), Sanders (12), Johnson (11) for Southwest Dekalb.

Columbia is now 13-3 on the season and play Elite Scholars Academy Jan. 11 at 7 p.m. in Jonesboro. Southwest Dekalb is 10-3 and play Chamblee High School at 7:30 p.m. in Chamblee. Columbia and Southwest DeKalb are both undefeated in region play.

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