Grain holds on for tourney title

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 28, 2004

Perhaps they were remembering the day before.

Just as they had in a double-overtime victory over Oak Grove to start the tourney, Against the Grain (AG) came through in the end, as Style Shot (SS) turned an early 10-point deficit into several leads before four points in the final minute by Latron Demiel and Derick Bailey put the finishing touches on a 56-54 Canned Food Tournament-winning victory Wednesday at Booker T. Washington Recreation Center.

With SS up 10-7 just over three minutes in, George Porter swished a free throw, and Demiel knocked in five points to take a 13-10 lead. George and Bailey banked up layups, and Troy Godwin rolled in another bucket to go up 20-10 with nine minutes left.

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Willie Barnes ended a nine-minute drought with a bucket, and Adrian Frierson scored to cut the lead to six. George hit a three-pointer, but Mark Hamlin and Frierson neutralized it with three points of their own, and Theotis Porter and Keith Artis got to 25-24. Leroy Skinner sank a free throw to knot the halftime score at 25, and Artis hit a jumper 15 seconds into the second half to give SS back the lead.

Neither team was able to get ahead by more than three for the next nine minutes, but George tied the score at 38 with 10:16 to play. A breakaway layup by Demiel gave AG the lead, and Godwin barged through the defense for two more layups for a 44-38 advantage with 5:42 on the clock.

Cris Artis sank a three-pointer for his first marks of the night, but Godwin made in past for another layup. Glen Hall scored for SS, and Skinner snatched the ball from George and broke away to tie the contest with 3:25 left.

AG called timeout, and Bailey knocked home a three-pointer. Godwin hit a free throw, and each team scored two points in the next 20 seconds to give SS a 50-46 lead at the one-minute mark.

Skinner heaved in a three-pointer, and AG stalled. Demiel was fouled with :56 to go and hit both free throws. Godwin pulled down an errant SS shot and sent the pass to Bailey for a 56-51 lead.

Artis hit a three-pointer with three seconds left, and Demiel was fouled one second later. He missed both shots, but SS was unable to get off a shot, and AG had the title.