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Logan holds off Wabash Valley, clinches share of GRAC title

  • Logan head coach Kyle Smithpeters talks during a timeout Tuesday night at Wabash Valley College.

    Logan head coach Kyle Smithpeters talks during a timeout Tuesday night at Wabash Valley College.
    Jon LeBlond Photo

updated: 2/28/2018 1:59 AM

MT. CARMEL -- The John A. Logan College men's basketball team rallied from an early deficit and then held off Wabash Valley College, 83-80, on the road Tuesday night to clinch at least a share of the Great Rivers Athletic Conference championship.

The Volunteers, who have moved back into the NJCAA Division I national rankings at the No. 22 spot, are now 24-5 overall and 14-3 in the GRAC with one game remaining. Wabash Valley dropped to 20-9 and 12-5.

Logan trailed 23-8 at the 12:44 mark of the first half after two free throws by Josh Thomas and was down 31-18 at the 9:18 mark after a 3-pointer by Marcel Cherry.

But the Vols reeled off 16 straight points over the next four minutes.

Logan took the lead on a 3-pointer by Jaiveon Eaves and capped the big run with a layup by Vonnie Patterson.

The Vols weren't done as that was just the start of a 33-6 run that closed the half and gave Logan a 51-39 lead at the break. Romelo Burrell finished the scoring flurry with a slam dunk in the final minute.

Logan's lead was at 15 with 13 minutes left when a jumper from Ronnie Carson made it 63-48 and still seemingly comfortable at 75-59 when David Sloan hit a 3-pointer at the seven-minute mark.

Wabash Valley went on a charge and pulled as close as 79-77 on two free throws by Cherry with 1:41 left, but a tip-in by Derek Hawthorne Jr. and two foul shots by Eaves gave the Vols some breathing room.

It was a three-point game after Jalen Newsom hit a trey with 12 seconds left to make it 83-80. Jonah Jackson missed a free throw to give WVC the ball but Cherry missed at a 3-point try at the buzzer.

Eaves led the Vols with 19 points, while Sloan had 10 points and 11 assists and Vonnie Patterson had 14 points and 13 rebounds.

Burrell and Hawthorne both added eight points -- Burrell also had a team-high eight rebounds -- and Taylor finished with seven points. Carson and Jackson chipped in six apiece and Quamain Nelson had five.

Cherry led WVC with 18 points. Marcus Garrett had 16, Tyresse Williford had 12 and Newsom put in 11.

Logan can clinch the outright GRAC championship with a win over Kaskaskia College on Friday night.

In the early game, the No. 9-ranked Wabash Valley women's squad rolled to a 110-80 win to snap the Lady Vols' eight-game win streak.

Logan is now 20-8 and 12-5, while Wabash Valley improved to 26-2 and 17-0.

Tramauryia Hunter led six Lady Warriors in double figures with 21 points and Dazha Congleton had 20. Ruby Angok had 17 and Alexis Thomas had 14.

Destiny Cozart led the Lady Vols with 32 points. Kaili Bacon had 21 and Farasia Hodge had 13.

The Lady Vols also host Kaskakia on Friday starting at 5 p.m.

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