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Mixson cutting down the nets after Tallassee's sub-regional win over Charles Henderson. Photo by Kyle Thornton.

Tigers special season ends

By Michael Butler

Tallassee's basketball season was hanging in the balance as a desperation heave from near midcourt sailed through the air toward the basket in the Southeast Regional at Garrett Coliseum in Montgomery.

Jamicah Humphery's 40-footer missed the mark as time expired on the Tigers.

Sylacauga beat Tallassee 54-52 to advance to the regional final to play Ramsay. The winner will be headed to Birmingham for the Class 5A semifinals, a goal THS set back when the season started in November.

Keiven Mixson, in his third year as head coach, looked at the positives despite the heartbreak.

"Obviously we came up short of our ultimate goal of winning a state championship," Mixson said, "but we have to put things in perspective. We won three tournaments. We had a thousand-point scorer. We set the all-time school wins record. We ranked in the top ten in the state all year. We lost five games - two were by one, and we were in every game we played. We hosted the area tournament and won the area tournament. We hosted a sub-regional game and won it. We made it to the region for the first time in school history.

"We did all this with a group of guys I wouldn't trade for anybody. It's okay to be disappointed, but we need to take some time to be thankful and reflect on a lot of great memories that were made this season and will be talked about for a long time."

The Tigers (27-5) led by eight in the first half and took a 24-21 lead into the locker room. Sylacauga surged ahead in the third period and led 53-44 with just over three minutes left. The Tigers then reeled off eight straight to get within one.

The Aggies's Shandarous Grant made one of two free throws to make it a two-point game with 4.4 seconds remaining.

The magic that Tallassee had in a fourth quarter comeback vs. Brewbaker Tech for the area tournament title and the buzzer-beater tip-in for a sub-regional victory over Charles Henderson didn't return this time as Humphery's long shot came up short.

Sylacauga's big 6-10 center and Mercer signee Shannon Grant led all scorers with 24 points. Three Tigers scored double digits; Truck Griffin (13), Tyrek Turner (11) and Tae Collins (10).

"I have to thank my six seniors for their hard work," Mixson said. "It will be hard saying bye to these guys and not having them around, but they will forever be a part of the change of Tallassee basketball."

2019-20 Season Results

Tallassee's Jalyn Daniels waits to inbound the ball at the Southeast Regional at Garrett Coliseum in Montgomery