We headed up to Jacksonville University Christian School to catch the first round of the Class 4A District 2 tournament last night.  With three of the better teams in all of Class 4A in the same district, a talented team was going to have its season come to an end after tonight.

#1 PROVIDENCE vs. #4 TRINITY CHRISTIAN

The Stallions of Providence are certainly one of the favorites to capture the 4A state title in March.  Trinity stayed with them for the first four minutes of the contest, trailing by just 8-4.  Providence closed out the first quarter with a 14-4 run to take a 22-8 lead into the second period.  Providence continued its domination in the second quarter as they had Trinity outmatched in every phase of the game.  The Stallions led by twenty-five at the break, 42-17.

Give Trinity credit for battling in the third quarter when they could have packed it in.  Providence did increase their lead to twenty-nine, 55-26 but Trinity was going to go down fighting.  After a minute of play into the fourth quarter, Providence put in its bench for the remainder of the contest.  The subs went above and beyond the call of duty, increasing the team’s lead until the running clock rule kicked in with four minutes to play at 64-28.  Providence would win comfortably with a final score of 69-29.

Providence was led by Norman Haynes with 17 points while Noah Mitchell added 10 points.  In all, 11 of the Stallions’ 13 players scored.

For Trinity, Miles Brooks was the only player to reach double figures with 11 points.

#2 UNIVERSITY CHRISTIAN vs. #3 BISHOP SNYDER

UC won the two meetings with Bishop Snyder this season to earn the #2 seed.  It was a sloppy game in the first four minutes as the score was just 2-1 in favor of homestanding UC.  Snyder then got going as they found way to get to the rim and finish inside while UC was struggling from any distance to make shots.  Snyder finished the period with a 9-0 run to lead 10-2.

Snyder built on its lead in the second quarter.  They got some perimeter shots to go in and also turned some UC turnovers into points.  By the time the halftime horn sounded, Snyder looked very much in control, up eleven at 31-20.

UC crept back into the game in the early part of the third period.  They got the gap down to single digits for a moment but Snyder regrouped and upped its lead to ten at 35-25 with four minutes to play.  Fortunes turned quickly when a Snyder player got a technical.  UC hit both free throws and then sank a three on the ensuing possession.  All of a sudden, the lead was cut in half to 35-30 with three minutes to play in the third.  That was the start of a 12-0 run by UC to close out the quarter.  Heading into the fourth period, UC was up two at 37-35.

Snyder had its share of chances to re-capture the lead in the final quarter.  With thirty seconds left, Corey Walker scored on a drive to get to within one at 50-49.  UC answered quickly with a bucket in transition to push its lead back to three with twenty seconds remaining.  A three to tie was off the mark for Snyder and UC came all the way back for a big victory to win by the score of 52-49.

University Christian will host Providence at 7PM on Friday for the district title.

UC got 18 points from Denzell Wiggins while Raishaad Newsome added 11 points.

Walker of Snyder led the way with 18 points while Gie Powell added 14 and Jalen Nesmith contributed 13 points.