Cougars advance to Elite 8

Published 3:40 am Monday, February 7, 2005

By By Tim Cottrell
Despite an up-and-down season, the Escambia Academy Cougars are flying high and heading to Montgomery after winning the AISA Area 1 Tournament.
"We're where we expected to be," Cougar coach Jason Allen said. "We've been through a lot of highs and lows to get here, but I think we're playing our best basketball right now. We're peaking at the right time."
The Cougars will travel to Montgomery later this week, where they will probably face Patrician Academy. Full schedules and times have not yet been announced.
Josh Montel of EA was named MVP of the tournament, and teammates Zack Thomas and Matt Amerson were named to the All-Tournament Team.
Escambia Acad. 72
Clarke Prep 38
In the opening round of the tournament, the Cougars rolled to a 72-38 win over the Clarke Prep Gators.
"We played pretty well, and got a chance to play everybody," Allen said.
The game was never close, and the Cougars were able to rest their starters in the fourth quarter.
Zack Thomas led all scorers with 20 points. Josh Montel and Matt Amerson added ten points apiece.
Escambia Acad. 71
Sparta Acad. 47
Although their leading scorer, Zack Thomas, was held in check throughout, the Cougars used a team effort to topple the Sparta Academy Warriors, 71-47
"The entire team stepped up tonight," Allen said. "We're playing better defense now, and we've got more scoring threats."
After a close first quarter, the Cougars dominated the second to take a 34-16 halftime lead.
The Cougars then jumped to a 22 point lead in the third quarter. The Warriors closed to a 17 point deficit, but a three-pointer by Matt Amerson with 3:57 to go in the game sealed the deal.
Cody Norton led the scoring for the Cougars with 14 points. Josh Montel added 12 points, and Matt Amerson pitched in 11.

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