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Mincey Leads Evans to Impressive Lemon Street Classic Win Over Lanier

After topping the class 6A runner up, the Knights advance to the quarterfinals to face the famous Norcross in the Semis.



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                      #5 Joshton Mincey (Evans)
School 1Q2Q3Q4QFinal
Evans 2519152382

    Evans – Brasen James 7 1-2 19, Rashad King 3 1-2 7, Joshton Mincey 7 5-7 20, Cameron Warren 1 0-0 2, Devin Story 6 0-0 15, Jaydnt Stephens 2 0-0 4, Tyson Jones 6 3-3 15. Totals: 32 10-14 82.

    Lanier – Andrew McConnell 5 1-2 13, Iajah Phillips 4 6-9 15, Makai Vassell 7 8-9 24, Justin Birch 1 0-0 3, CJ Hyland 2 0-0 4, Mason Friedel 0 2-2 2, Connor Marcantel 2 0-0 6, Blaine Bell 0 1-2 1, Jayce Nathaniel 1 2-4 4. Totals: 22 20-28 74.

Three-point goals – Evans: 8 (James 4, Mincey, Story 3). Lanier: 7 (McConnell 2, Phillips, Vasell, Birch, Marcantel 2).

Evans topped class 6A power Lanier 82-74 Saturday in the quarterfinal round of the Lemon Street Classic after senior point guard Joshton Mincey helped the Knights weather a furious second-half run by Lanier that whittled a 17-point third-quarter Evans advantage to only a 1 point lead by the 3:24 mark of the fourth quarter. In the midst of Lanier’s surge, Mincey, who led Evans with 20 points, scored or assisted on 15 of 19 points for Evans. 

Mincey was joined in double figures by junior Brasen James (19), who made 4 three pointers, all in the opening quarter when Evans jumped out to a 25-14 advantage by making 7 threes as a team. Fellow junior Devin Story, who buried three bombs himself, added 15 points, including 13 in the first half. And 6-6 sophomore center Tyson Jones also chipped in 15. Jones scored 11 points in the second half to combine with Mincey in the Knights’ defense of a lead that grew as large as 54-37 with 3:00 remaining in the third quarter.

Lanier’s surge caught steam right after Jones scored to put Evans ahead 59-44 late in the third quarter. The Longhorns then forced multiple turnovers by Evans and scored consecutive buckets, including a three pointer by James Madison bound senior Andrew McConnell to cut the deficit to 59-49 heading into the final quarter. McConnell then opened the fourth with another three from the Marietta High logo in the jump ball circle to make it 59-52.

During the run, which lasted the whole quarter but never allowed Lanier to tie Evans, let alone take a lead, Mincey made a huge impact. He first interrupted Lanier’s surge with a drive and left handed layup to give Evans a 61-55 lead with 7:00 remaining. Later he scored another field goal to make it 65-59, and then he dropped a pair of free throws for a 69-64 Evans lead. 

Mincey’s play was most valuable during the final three minutes, when he first assisted Jones on a layup that put Evans ahead 71-68 right after Lanier had cut the lead to 1. Then after a Lanier bucket, Mincey converted an and-1 to give Evans breathing room in the form of a 74-70 lead with 2:23 remaining. Then Mincey dropped in a beautiful floater in the middle of the lane to give Evans and 76-70 lead with 1:50 left. Finally he fed James for an uncontested dunk that put the Knights ahead 78-72 and all but sealed the game.

The result against a Lanier team that came within 3 points of winning a class 6A state title last season should give fans of the Knights, who reached the quarterfinals of the playoffs themselves last year, optimism that Evans can compete with any team in class 6A. And Monday brings an ever bigger opportunity for Evans to prove itself because its semifinal opponent is none other than the famous Norcross, the starting point for the several NBA careers of its former players, and the winner of four class 6A state championships in the 2000’s before moving to the newer class 7A, where the Blue Devils have remained a state title contender pretty much ever since.


[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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