Barons split Holiday Classic games

MOUNT VERNON -- After scoring a lopsided win Friday night in the Brewton-Parker College Holiday Classic, the host Barons found themselves entrapped in a slow-tempo struggle Saturday in their final basketball game of the fall semester.

On Friday, Brewton-Parker dominated Voorhees College (S.C.) 93-68 in avenging a last-second loss to the Tigers in Denmark, S.C., on Dec. 1.

Junior post Bryan Jett of Hampton and senior post Hector Solano of Miami, Fla., combined for 50 points and 22-for-28 shooting in leading the Barons.

On Saturday, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Fla.) took just 36 shots against Brewton-Parker but emerged with a 59-55 win, thus spoiling the Barons' hopes of sweeping its two semester-ending games.

"They slowed the tempo down because they couldn't match up with us," Brewton-Parker coach Steve Barker said. "They played the game the way they wanted to play and made it a possession game, and took us out of our style."

Embry-Riddle, which lost to Shorter College on Friday, led Saturday's game just 23-19 at halftime after shooting just 35.3 percent in the first half but holding the Barons to 30 percent success.

Both team were improved in shooting accuracy in the second half, with Embry-Riddle hitting 52.6 percent and the Barons 50 percent as the Eagles never led by more than six.

Brewton-Parker whittled the margin to 56-55 in the final minute, but a go-ahead shot attempt and another game-tying attempt missed, leaving the Barons at 4-4 heading into the Christmas break.

"We had a chance to win," Barker said. "Big-time players make big-time plays and we don't have anybody like that, but we're working hard. Those two shots just wouldn't fall."

In an unusual twist for a classic, Voorhees' win over Shorter on Saturday left all four teams with 1-1 records for the weekend.

Jett had double-doubles in both games, scoring a game-high 26 points and grabbing 16 rebounds against Voorhees.

Solano followed with 24 points on 11-for-13 shooting, while senior guard Jarvis Smith of Atlanta hit three 3-pointers in scoring 15 points and junior guard Tre Hill of Waycross added 10 points along with four assists. Voorhees had two players with 12 points apiece.

On Saturday against Embry-Riddle, Jett had 12 points and 11 rebounds for his fifth double-double, along with two blocked shots. Junior guard Jelani Dukes matched Jett's 12-point total and Hill had 10 points along with a game-high five assists. Freshman guard Luis Chavez led Embry-Riddle's victory with 19 points.

The Barons will be off until they travel to Americus for the Georgia Southwestern State College Holiday Classic, beginning Jan. 2 with a 6 p.m. game against the NAIA Division I No. 1 ranked Mountain State University (W.Va.). Brewton-Parker then plays Tennessee Temple University on Jan. 3 at 4 p.m.

"We will just have to come back to work and try to get better for conference play," said Barker, whose team then opens Georgia-Alabama-Carolina Conference action Jan. 8 at Auburn University Montgomery (Ala.).




Brewton-Parker College junior guard Tre Hill (No. 5) pulls in a loose rebound and looks downcourt while junior post Bryan Jett (12) gains his footing in the transition during first-half action of the Barons' Holiday Classic game against Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Fla.) at the Student Activities Center on campus in Mount Vernon.