Class AAA semifinals results

Jenkins 77, Rutland 74: The Warriors withstood a furious rally to hold on for a win in the Class AAA boys semifinals.

No. 5 Jenkins will face No. 3 Morgan County in the state title game on March 7 in Macon.

The Warriors led by 16 with five minutes left, but fell behind in the final minute before pulling out the victory.

Malik Benlevi led the way with 28 points for Jenkins, and each one was needed to stave off the efforts of Rutland point guard Ty'lik Evans.

Evans scored 12 straight points as the Hurricanes wiped away the towering deficit in less than four minutes, and finished with 28 points, all in the second half.

Jenkins trailed by a point with less than 20 seconds remaining, but sophomore forward Trevion Lamar converted a tough bucket inside to take back the lead, then came up with a steal on the opposite end to help seal the win.

Lamar and Eric Johnson each had 15 for Jenkins, who will be playing in the first state title game in program history.

Jeremy Braswell scored 16 for Rutland, and Dallas Smith added 14.

Morgan County 68, Laney 62: Tookie Brown scored 32 of his game-high 37 points in the second half, leading the Bulldogs to an upset win over top-ranked Laney in the Class AAA boys semifinals.

The third-ranked Bulldogs (24-7) will face Jenkins in the state championship game on March 7 in Macon.

The Wildcats (29-2), who were led by Zephaniah Jasper and Jaylen Taylor, with 13 points each, had beaten Morgan County twice in the regular season and led for three quarters before the Bulldogs moved in front for the first time.

Brown, a senior point guard, came out of the locker room on an obvious mission after halftime. After scoring five points in the first two quarters, he made eight straight field goals and scored 21 in the first 10 minutes of the second half as Morgan County, the defending state champs, clawed their way into the lead. By the time he cooled off, momentum was solidly in the Bulldogs' corner.

Brown sealed the win by sinking 11 of 12 free throws in the final two minutes, including all of his final 10 attempts.

Jailyn Ingram added 15 points for Morgan County.

The loss was Laney's first since its season opener.

Beach 47, East Hall 38: Jacqueline Anderson scored 16 points to lead the Lady Bulldogs to victory in the Class AAA semifinals.

The fifth-ranked Lady Bulldogs will face No. 2 Laney in the state championship game on March 7 in Macon.

Dy'Manee Royal added 11 points for Beach, which will be playing in the state finals for the first time since 2000.

Kylah Mize led East Hall, which entered the state playoffs unranked, with 17 points.

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