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Posted: February 25, 2012 10:32 p.m.

Tigers roar with 17th straight win

Make that 17 straight for Alcovy.

The Alcovy boys' basketball team defeated Forest Park 78-65 on Friday night, advancing to the AAAA Sweet 16.

The Tigers' streak looked like it was in jeopardy throughout the first half as they trailed by as many as seven. Michael Tucker led the Tigers with 28 points.
After Michael Tucker connected on the game's first basket, Forest Park (16-12) scored seven straight. The Panthers went into the second quarter leading 15-14. The Tigers (26-3) would take back the lead, following an 8-2 run, at 25-21.
But it was short lived with Forest Park scoring the next 11 points.

"They were nervous," said Alcovy coach Eugene Brown of his team's performance in the first half. "We're a young team, we've got eight seniors but the main players are still young. This is their first experience playing in the state playoffs. They're excited about the situation and just had to settle down a little bit."

Trailing 32-28, coming out of the locker room, Alcovy scored six straight, sparked by Devon Edwards with four points.

"We had to attack their pres the way we talked about in practice," Brown said. "We knew what they were going to do but we didn't attack it liked we talked about attacking it. At halftime we had to refresh their memory."

Forest Park's Lemuel Fuller tied it on two free throws, but that would be as close as the Panthers got the rest of the way. Alcovy answered the foul shots with a 4-0 run.

Then, leading 42-38 Alcovy blew it open. After a missed field, the Panthers fouled Alcovy a little too hard on the defensive end and were called for a technical foul.

Marcus Beasley made both free throws and Michael Tucker hit a layup on the ensuing possession. Devon Edwards followed with a layup, Deondre Butler hit a shot and Tucker finished an 11-0 run by the Tigers.

"I don't' know that (the technical) sparked them," Brown said. "They were going pretty well at that time but that might have added to it a little more."

Alcovy outscored Forest Park 26-8 during the third period. Tucker finished with 10 points during the period.

The Tigers stretched their lead to as many as 20, 75-55 on Tucker's free throws midway through the fourth quarter.

Tucker finished his big game, and the Tigers' first round win with a dunk in the final seconds.

"He did really well offensively," Brown said. "He had a couple of lapses on defense but he played really hard."

Alcovy will host the winner of Saturday's Bainbridge and Effingham County matchup on Wednesday.

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