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First Baptist advances to SCISA state semis; Porter-Gaud falls

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First Baptist advanced into the SCISA AAA state semifinals with a 54-37 second-round win over Heathwood Hall Wednesday in Sumter.

The third-seeded Hurricanes will next face top-seeded Trinity-Byrnes back at the Sumter Civic Center on Friday with a bid to the state championship game on the line.

Luke Perrucci led First Baptist against Heathwood with 15 points on 55 percent shooting. The junior scored five in the first quarter to help the Hurricanes take a 13-6 lead into the second. Heathwood would’ve been shut out were it not for two threes from Josh Gary.

Heathwood found some offense in the second quarter with three players scoring at least three points. Perrucci countered with a three and Colin McKenzie added his second trey of the game to keep the Hurricanes ahead 25-17 at halftime.

First Baptist rang up 17 points in the third quarter. Perruci scored seven while, Mikey Blandin turned in six of his 11 points in the frame.

McKenzie kept First Baptist ahead with six of his 14 points in the fourth quarter. The Hurricanes had a comfortable enough lead to shuffle in 17 players throughout the game.

Trinity-Byrnes topped Pinewood, 71-51, in the second round on Wednesday.

The Titans are led by senior Jordan Jones, an AAU teammate of several Hurricanes who play for the Charleston-based TMP team operated by First Baptist coach Antoine Saunders. Jones is averaging 17 points per game this season. He scored 21 in a 62-59 comeback win over First Baptist in January, including all 13 of the Titans points in the fourth quarter.

Porter-Gaud drops opener

Porter-Gaud fell to Hammond , 50-39, in the second round of the SCISA AAA playoffs on Wednesday.

South Carolina football signees Jordan Burch and Boogie Huntley combined for 28 points for the third-seeded Skyhawks, who will face defending state champion Cardinal Newman in the state semifinals on Friday.

Porter-Gaud led 13-10 after the first quarter and 23-20 by halftime. Five different Cyclones scored in the opening quarter. Senior guard Tobias Lafayette made a three-pointer in the first quarter and added two in second.

Hammond pushed ahead 35-32 by the close of the third quarter as Burch scored five and Huntley Tucker Toman both added four.

Porter-Gaud leading scorer Mason Grant fouled out in the fourth quarter with 11 points. Lafayette was held scoreless in the second half.

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