By Doug Gorman
The Eagle's Landing Golden Eagles pulled away late in the fourth quarter to beat county rival Luella 56-48 at home Friday night.
With the game still in doubt, the Golden Eagles' James Wheeler completed a three-point play to give Eagle's Landing a 48-44 lead.
From there, Eagle's Landing outscored the Lions 10-4 down the stretch.
Playing the game without Luke Murton, who was on the bench in street clothes, the Golden Eagles picked up a strong performance from Will Martin, who led the way with 14 points for Eagle's Landing.
Martin tried to put some distance between the Golden Eagles and Lions early in the second half.
Eagle's Landing only led 20-19 at the break, but Martin gave the Golden Eagles the early momentum with three 3-point shots in the third quarter.
His third trey of the half gave the Golden Eagles a 31-20 lead.
Luella answered the Eagle's Landing spurt, connecting on its own 3-point shots as Kyle Nichols and Josh Heath drilled shots from behind the 3-point line. Heath, who also had a 3-point shot in the first quarter, finished the game with 10 points.
Late in the third quarter, Eagle's Landing led 35-26.
However, Luella went on an 8-1 run late and closed the gap to 36-34 on DeShaun Usher's basket heading into the final quarter,
Luella kept its run going in the fourth quarter and when Robert Reynolds hit a pair of free throws, the Lions led 37-36.
Eagle's Landing 40, Luella 39 (girls): The Eagle's Landing Golden Eagles built a double-digit lead early in the first quarter, but any thoughts they had at blowing Luella out of the gym were quickly put aside by a determined Lady Lions.
The game was still in doubt until the waning seconds when Kris Jones hit a shot to round out the scoring and give the Lady Golden Eagles the 40-39 lead with under a minute left.
Jones' basket was just one of two scored by Eagle's Landing in the fourth quarter.
Hayley Ferrell scored 26 points to lead Eagle's Landing, while Lauren Ringfield had 19.
Eagle's Landing led 14-7 at the end of the first quarter and 24-21 at the break. The game stay close in the third quarter, but the Lady Golden Eagles managed to led 33-31.
Luella took its first lead of the game at 27-26 on a basket by Ashley Guy. Baskets by Ringfield and Monisia Miller tied the game on two different times.