ROBERTA -- Greater Atlanta Christian had the size and the big-city pedigree. Crawford County had the talent and the big crowd.
It all added up to a spectacular contest Saturday in the second round of the GHSA Class AA boys basketball playoffs. Crawford County pulled off an 88-81 overtime victory in front of a loud, standing-room-only home crowd, continuing what has been a quality run by the Eagles.
Crawford County (25-3) advances to host Thomasville, a 72-54 winner over Greene County, in Wednesday’s quarterfinal round. Crawford County won Region 4-AA, while Thomasville is the No. 3 seed from Region 1-AA.
“The big thing about this team is that they have heart and guts,” Crawford County head coach Clyde Zachery said. “They’re not going to quit on you. We’re still young and still learning, but they can play.”
After trailing in the first half, Crawford County made it a back-and-forth game in after the break. The Eagles held GAC scoreless for the final 1:31 of regulation, with William Jarrell driving the lane with 26 seconds to go to tie it at 71. Two attempts by GAC to win it in regulation missed the mark, forcing overtime.
Brian Coffey’s two free throws with 2:18 to go gave GAC (19-10) a 79-77 lead, but Crawford County took over from there with an 11-2 run to close out the game. A pair of Jarrell buckets gave the Eagles the lead, and eight free throws down the stretch allowed them to pull away.
Five players scored in double figures for Crawford County, led by Jarrell with 28. Marcal Knolton, whose seven-point fourth quarter kept the Eagles in the game, finished with 17. Monkeize Moore and Quay Wiggins each had 13, while Jeremy Raines scored 11.
All five starters finished in double figures for GAC, led by Garrett Covington with 22 points.