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Zyair Green and Miller Grove Top Grovetown in Lemon Street Classic Quarterfinals

Green’s imprint seemed to be stamped on every Miller Grove run, and on each Miller Grove answer to Grovetown’s runs.

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                    #11 Zyair Green (Miller Grove)
School1Q2Q3Q4QFinal
Miller Grove2317191775
Grovetown 1419171466

    Miller Grove – Marqua Owens 1 0-0 2, David Brooks Jr. 1 0-0 2, Zyair Green 10 13-15 35, Tyriek Boyd 4 2-2 10, Jahmil Barber 6 1-2 13, Mattew McCullum 3 1-1 7, Jamarcus Glover 3 1-2 7. Totals: 28 18-22 75.

    Grovetown – Malik Ferguson 5 1-2 11, Jaye Gant 4 0-0 8, Julius Brown 7 3-4 18, Zach Bell 8 5-6 23, Jaden Cobb 1 0-0 2, Markell Freeman 1 0-2 2. Totals: 26 9-14 66.

Three-point goals – Miller Grove: 2 (Greene 2). Grovetown: 3 (Brown, Bell 2).

Zyair Green scored 33 points to lead Miller Grove to a 75-66 win over Grovetown in the quarterfinal round of the Lemon Street Classic Saturday. Green’s imprint seemed to be stamped on every Miller Grove run, and on each Miller Grove answer to every Grovetown run, starting in the first quarter and repeating throughout the game until the very end…

After Grovetown senior Zach Bell, who led the Warriors with 23 points, made the first of his 3 first half three pointers, Green answered with a three of his own to give Miller Grove a 21-11 advantage with 30 seconds left in the first quarter.

And after sophomore Malik Ferguson’s left hand finish cut Miller Grove’s lead to 36-33 with under a minute left in the first half, Green scored 4 points in the final 20 seconds, including a buzzer beating layup after a coast-to-coast drive, to make it 40-33 at halftime.

And on the first play of the third quarter Green scored again on a give-and-go after inbounding the ball at half court to make the lead 9. Later in the third quarter, Green would convert a three point play with 1:26 remaining to match Miller Grove’s largest lead at 57-44. 

Propelled by a relentless attack of the offensive glass by 6-7 senior center Jaye Gant, Grovetown responded with an 8-1 run to narrow the deficit to 58-52 early in the fourth quarter. Gant scored 8 points in the game, and 6 came in the third quarter on putbacks. During Grovetown’s run, Gant also rebounded two missed three pointers by Bell to keep the possession alive long enough for Ferguson to score a putback of his own.

But Green again deflated any hope of a Grovetown comeback when he scored to make it 63-52 moments later. Grovetown wouldn’t seriously threaten Miller Grove’s lead after that.

Green’s scoring outburst included accuracy from long distance, from where he connected for 2 three pointers, as well as activity in the paint, where the senior attacked the rim to earn 15 trips to the foul line. He made 13.

Senior Julius Brown added 18 points to go along with Bell’s 23 for Grovetown in a losing effort.

Miller Grove advanced to Monday’s semifinal round, where it will meet McEachern (7:30), a winner today against Heritage, in a matchup between Peach State powerhouses. Grovetown drops to the consolation bracket to face Heritage at 12:30 in a non-region matchup between league foes.

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[Livestream] Grovetown vs Evans in Region Battle for Playoff Position

Evans hosts Grovetown and looks to avenge their buzzer beater loss to the Warriors on January 22nd.

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“Sophomore Malik Ferguson picked up a loose ball in the middle of the paint with one second remaining, and right before the fourth quarter buzzer sounded, he released a shot that found its mark to give Grovetown 61-60 win over Evans Friday, a result that threw the top spot in the class 6A, region 5 standings into a three way tie between Grovetown, Evans and Heritage to mark the beginning of the stretch run for the league’s regular season championship. Ferguson’s shot came at the end of a full court dash by Grovetown after head coach Darren Douglas was able to draw up a play during a timeout that was meant to result in a bucket in only six seconds. The play was designed for senior Zach Bell, who eventually fumbled the ball after spinning between defenders at the end of a drive that began near half court after he gathered the ball from freshman Derrion Reid.”

That was Chad Cook’s rundown of the instant classic that these two teams played two weeks ago. That win by Grovetown sets up a must-win scenario for Evans as they look to maintain their footing in the race for a region championship.

Be sure to get your ? ready early because if tonight’s game is as exciting as the last one, you just might forget those jokers altogether!

Streams will be posted here. Tip-off times are as follows:
Girls – 6:30 PM
Boys – 8:00 PM

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Former Basketball Stars Lead the Way in Business, Community Service, and Artistic Pursuits

Harold Doby, Reggie Middleton and Roman Hill have turned a brand into a business, a lifestyle and a mental framework for impacting their community.

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Reggie Middleton (left) and Harold Doby (right)

On January 4th, the day after Harold Doby’s “Books and Life Lessons” (B.A.L.L.) charitable organization conducted a coat drive to help keep warm some of the most vulnerable people in the downtown area, I spoke with Doby and Reggie Middleton, two lifelong friends and former college and high school basketball stars, at Middleton’s “Came From Nxthing Designer Apparel” shop at 120 James Brown Boulevard. Our interview (below) covered the coat drive, Reggie’s entrepreneurial journey, and the meaning behind the “Came From Nxthing” brand, which originated from the music of Roman Hill, our third interviewee. Hill’s friendship with Doby and Middleton helped sprout a “movement” that has provided a framework for the three former athletes to impact the world through acts of community service, business, art, entrepreneurship and charity.

The interview provided a great chance for me to get reacquainted with two men I’ve watched grow from being boys who excelled in a game, to leaders of their families and their community. I bet others who watched them star at Glenn Hills and Winthrop (Middleton), and at Laney and Augusta University (Doby), will also gain satisfaction from hearing about their continued personal development. For example, Reggie explained how he took advantage of his basketball talent to earn a job playing professional basketball in London. Then he used his experience there to hatch a business idea to bring high-quality fashion for an affordable price to people in his hometown.

Reggie Middleton scored 1,186 points for Winthrop.

Harold’s concern for people who are most in need, whether it be the men and women he personally distributed the coats to earlier this month, or the students in his school he recalled giving clothes and shoes to when he was in grade school, is the original reason for my getting back into contact with the two men I once coached and taught when they were middle schoolers.

Harold Doby distributing coats in downtown Augusta on January 4.

I’m grateful we reconnected because they are a shining example of what can be greatest about sports and the community that builds around such a life journey: strong, caring relationships developed through shared experiences, encounters with adversity, and moments of triumph, as well as failures and hardships. Reggie’s story about how he has been able to take the difficult circumstances of the pandemic and nonetheless thrive in business with his “back against the wall” by drawing on his experiences as a basketball player growing up reinforces something I’ve always believed, that youth sports is great practice for real life. 

Harold Doby and Reggie Middleton, as well as Roman Hill, whom Doby first met as his rapping Augusta University basketball teammate, are winning the game of real life every bit as much as they did when they mastered the game of basketball as younger men.

Look out for news of the next Drive from B.A.L.L. Visit the Came From Nxthing Designer Apparel Facebook page to see Reggie’s merchandise, shop with him online or find store information:

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