Class 4A boys: Pace Academy 66, Fayette County 54

Credit: Stan Awtrey

Credit: Stan Awtrey

The globetrotting Pace Academy boys have taken on all comers this season, doing battle with some of the best teams from California, New York, North Carolina, Virginia and Pennsylvania. On Wednesday night the Knights showed they’re pretty good against local competition, too.

The Knights got 42 combined points from juniors L.J. Moore and Kyle Greene Jr. and beat Fayette County to win the Class 4A championship at the Macon Coliseum and earn their third championship in the last four years.

“I try to treat each one just like it’s the most important one,” Pace Academy coach Sharman White said. “We didn’t take any days off in preparation, trying to get ready for a really good team in Fayette County.”

Moore, a 6-foot-8 forward, scored 23 points on 10-for-16 shooting, with seven rebounds. Greene, a silky point guard who was voted the Region 5 Player of the Year, scored 19 points on 9-for-13 shooting with five rebounds. Pace Academy (25-7) also got eight points from Chandler Bing.

Fayette County (26-6) was led by Robert Hurst with 12 points and Tobi Ijiwoye added 10 points.

The score was 24-24 late in the first half when Pace began to pull away. The Knights led 39-32 at halftime and scored the first eight points of the third quarter – six of them by Bing -- to provide separation. Fayette County could not cut the margin to single digits the rest of the game.

“That 8-0 run was really important,” Moore said. “It got our energy going and showed we were ready to go, just keep the intensity up the whole time. That’s how we started and that’s how we closed the game.”

It was the fifth overall state championship for Pace Academy and the third for coach Sharman White, who also won seven state titles during his stint at Miller Grove.

“It means a lot to have five and I’m blessed to be a part of one,” Moore said.

Fayette County had its 13-game winning streak broke and could not find a way to bring home a title for longtime coach Andre Flynn, who has taken the Tigers to the playoffs for 23 straight years and won his 500th game this season.

Fayette County (54): Christian McAllister 8, Robert Hurst 12, Keith Gillespie 9, Reginald Kennedy 8, Sean Van Dorn 5, Tobi Ijiwoye 10, Jackson Rutley, Isaiah Franklin. (Two of Fayette County’s points were scored by Pace Academy.)

Pace Academy (66): Kyle Greene Jr. 19, Eric Chatfield Jr. 5, Chandler Bing 8, Kendall Evans 6, L.J. Moore 23. M.J. Madison 1, Jackson Ferry 2, Jaydon Avery, Davis Rice 2, Ben Leach, Gavin Jeffries.

Fayette County -- 16-16-10-12 -- 54

Pace Academy -- 16-23-16-11 -- 66