RAINSVILLE — In a game that milked every second of the fourth quarter, No. 2-seeded Fyffe’s patience and balanced attack reigned supreme.
Parker Godwin’s 19 points led three Red Devils in double-digit scoring as they put together a strong all-around performance en route to a 63-59 victory against the No. 1 Plainview Bears in the DeKalb County Tournament championship Saturday night.
Godwin and Micah Johnson (13 points, 11 rebounds) earned tournament co-MVP honors as Fyffe (16-4) earned its second county championship in a row. Xavier Works finished with 12 points, Brody Dalton added nine points and 10 rebounds and Tate Goolesby had eight points.
Fyffe coach Neal Thrash was proud of the effort his team used to close out the game.
“We played really hard,” he said. “I know you can’t tell by looking at the stats, but we were trying to guard Cole (Millican); he’s a pretty darn good basketball player.”
Millican scored a game-high 37 points with six rebounds for the Bears (22-4), Levi Brown had 11 points and Jathan Underwood chipped in nine points and eight rebounds.
“We just tried to do a better job of limiting (Fyffe’s) second-chance points, and we tried to do a better job of keeping them out of the lane,” Plainview coach Robi Coker said.
Fyffe held a 49-43 advantage at the start of the fourth quarter and Plainview pulled within two points of the lead three different times during the final stretch.
Millican made a pair of free throws with 17.8 seconds left to bring the Bears within 59-57 before Godwin received an inbounds pass and was immediately fouled.
Godwin made two foul shots in the 1-and-1 shooting situation to extend the Red Devils’ lead to 61-57 with 15.7 left.
Millican drew a foul on a 3-point attempt as the final buzzer sounded, but officials called the foul before time expired and awarded Millican three foul shots as the game clock was reset to 0.5 seconds.
Millican went 2 of 3 from the free-throw line and Fyffe inbounded to Godwin again with Plainview fouling before any time ran off the clock. Godwin sank both free throws.
Plainview threw an inbounds pass toward Millican on the far side of the court as time expired.
“We just kept plugging away,” Thrash said. “We really didn’t shoot foul shots that well, we really didn’t take care of the ball that well, but we just kept fighting.”
Johnson dunked on a fast break to give Fyffe the lead for good at 21-18 at the 3:20 mark in the second quarter. Goolesby scored a layup and Works added a 3-pointer to end the half with the Red Devils leading 28-21.
“I thought our guys showed toughness, I thought we did a good job of battling to get back in the game,” Coker said. “But at the end of the second quarter we allowed them to go on that run, and they scored to start the third quarter and put us behind. I took a crazy effort to get back in the game and we just couldn’t score down the stretch.”
With 6:40 left in the third, Dalton blocked a shot in the paint and set up an outlet pass to Godwin for a transition jump shot to make it 32-23. Johnson hit a 3 and assisted Works with another 3 to make it 41-31 at the 4:25 mark in the period.
Millican scored seven straight points for the Bears to close the third. He sank a straightaway 3-pointer, added a layup and a mid-range jumper inside the quarter’s last 3 minutes.
“I think Cole Millican is one of the best players in northeast Alabama, and (Plainview) has a couple of other good shooters too,” Thrash said. “They’re missing a very key player in Luke Smith, a guy that’s hard for us to guard.
“We’ve talked about playing defense every day and the kids buy into it and don’t mind playing defense. Actually, some of them really enjoy it, so that’s a good thing.”
Fyffe advanced to the tournament final after defeating No. 3 Geraldine 76-72 in Friday’s semifinal round.
Godwin led the Red Devils with 20 points and six rebounds, Johnson had 19 points and eight rebounds, Dalton added 14 points and Works finished with 12 points and six assists.
Jaxon Colvin scored a game-high 23 points for the Bulldogs (13-4), Colt Lusher added 19 points and Ridge Berry chipped in 18 points.
Geraldine forced 20 turnovers from Fyffe.
Plainview advanced after topping No. 4 Sylvania 70-57 on Friday.
Jonah Williams scored 20 points for the Bears, Dylan Haymon added 15 points, Millican had 11 points and Underwood had 10.
The all-tournament team included: Colton Wills (Collinsville); Logan McCullough (Sylvania); Jarrett Hill (Sylvania); Colvin (Geraldine); Lusher (Geraldine); Haymon (Plainview); Williams (Plainview); Millican (Plainview); Works (Fyffe); Dalton (Fyffe).