Cherokee County (7-21) played keep away most of the game, opting to run as much clock as possible on its possessions to neutralize the threat of Hokes Bluff (19-9) 7-foot-2 center Isaac Haas.
In the end, though, the Eagles did just enough to advance the championship against Jacksonville on Monday. Jacksonville got a 3-pointer from Dez Curry in the final seconds to knock off Alexandria 54-53 Friday.
For Hokes Bluff, Haas did plenty of damage when he had his chances. He scored all nine points of the overtime frame for the Eagles and finished with 24 points.
The game stayed close throughout with Hokes Bluff leading 10-9 at the end of the first quarter and 21-18 at halftime. The Eagles took a 25-23 advantage into the fourth quarter but found themselves trailing 31-28 with about five minutes remaining in the contest. They rallied from there to secure a spot in the title game and in the sub-regional round.
A win at sub-region would send Hokes Bluff to the Northeast Regional tournament at Jacksonville State University.
Tanner Shields added eight points for Hokes Bluff.
For Cherokee County, Jo Jo Diamond scored 18 points and Tony Pruitt added 16 points.
Class 2A, Area 11
Gaston 52, Sand Rock 40
RAINBOW CITY – A big run in the fourth quarter helped Gaston rally for a 52-40 win over Sand Rock on Friday night to advance to the finals of the Class 2A, Area 11 tournament.
The Bulldogs (6-14) trailed the entire game and faced a 36-31 deficit heading into the fourth, but it was a different game from there. Gaston picked up the pressure on defense and got some easy buckets in transition that aided a 17-0 run to take command of the contest.
The win advanced the Bulldogs into Monday night’s championship game against No. 6 Westbrook Christian at 7 p.m.
Trevion Rooks led all scorers Friday night with 20 points. He added 11 rebounds. Jackson Bogle had 11 points and six assists, Albert Douglas had eight points, while Braxton Collins added 12 rebounds.
For Sand Rock (11-15), Dakota Mabry scored nine points. Joel Brock, Devon Howard and Sean Stansell each had six points. Dylan Mackey finished with five points.
Class 3A, Area 10
Piedmont 53, Saks 49
ANNISTON – The Piedmont Bulldogs held on for a 53-49 upset victory over top-seeded Saks in the Class 3A, Area 10 tournament Friday.
The Bulldogs (8-19) advance to meet Weaver in Monday's area championship game at 7 p.m. The Bearcats defeated White Plains 61-54 in the other tournament semifinal at Saks High School. Saks' season come to an end at 21-6.
Denard Spears led the Bulldogs with 14 points. Dreek Thompson added 12 points. Taylor Hayes and Darnell Jackson both contributed eight points. Jackson also had seven rebounds.
Daniel Heard led Saks with 18 points. Tre Smith netted 15 points and Chase Johnson finished with 10 points.