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Crusaders down Oak Mountain to earn second consecutive state title

Curtis Baptist 62, Oak Mountain 50

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MACON, Ga. — Curtis Baptist head coach John Spurlock knew that one of the keys to the GISA Class A state championship game Saturday would be the Crusaders depth against a team that plays only five players the entire game.

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Curtis Baptist posing with their first place trophy after winning the GISA Boys Class A basketball championship in Macon over Oak Mountain.  CLAY TEAGUE/SPECIAL
Curtis Baptist posing with their first place trophy after winning the GISA Boys Class A basketball championship in Macon over Oak Mountain.

Substituting freely the whole way, Curtis Baptist effectively wore down a pesky Oak Mountain team and cruised to its second consecutive state championship with a 62-50 win.

Rodney Snell came off the bench to score 18 points, while Micah Ryals added 14 for the Crusaders.

“We knew that Oak Mountain would come out here and play us tough and never quit and that is exactly what they did,” said Spurlock, whose team ends the season 25-7. “After winning a state championship last year, we went into every game no matter who we were playing with a target on our chest, and we saw everyone’s best effort. It is a tribute to every player and especially every senior on this team to be able to win another championship.”

The second one was not easy in the beginning. Oak Mountain played a nearly flawless first quarter and led 15-9, with Wade Mason scoring seven of his 15 points.

By the time the second quarter started, Curtis Baptist had settled down. The Crusaders outscored Oak Mountain 10-0 over the first two minutes of the quarter and grabbed their first lead, at 16-15. Curtis Baptist took its biggest lead of the half at 32-25 when Ryals hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer.

Curtis Baptist continued to add to its lead in the third quarter, outscoring Oak Mountain 18-8 to open 50-33 lead by the end of the quarter.

After a three-point play by Snell gave Curtis Baptist its biggest lead, at 59-39 early in fourth quarter, Oak Mountain was able to put together one more run, cutting the lead to 11 with 1:41 left, but that was the closest it would get.

Snell gave credit to his teammates for win.

“I am just a sophomore and the senior leadership on this team is amazing,” he said. “We have two championships in a row now and it definitely motivates me to want two more before I graduate.”

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Itsallnew11 03/10/14 - 08:43 am

It has been an awesome year for an awesome team of young men. Congrats and God Speed on life's ventures that lie ahead.

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