Benjamin Russell at Coosa (copy)

Cliff Williams / The Outlook Benjamin Russell Coach Jeremy Freeman

Benjamin Russell High notched their first basketball area win in the Jeremy Freeman era Tuesday night against Stanhope Elmore.

"It's certainly big for the program. The program needed that win," Freeman said. "We did not win an area game last year. We didn't win one. We got put out of the area tournament by one point. Last year we didn't win but three games and we already got three. It's so many positives. So many."

The Wildcats were down 17-3 in the opening quarter of play but managed to score 10 unanswered to battle back to a 17-13 deficit.

"I'm just so proud of them, we were down 17-3. Can you believe that?" Freeman said. "We came back. That was something that I've been trying to get them to understand. Not giving up, not quitting. Stay with the course of the game it's a lot more plays to make."

During the second quarter, BRHS limited Stanhope to five points while scoring 16.

Powering the program in the second quarter was Gabe Benton and Chris Foster who each dropped 10 points in the second quarter rally. Benjamin Russell found the third quarter with Quez Thompson leading the way despite being outscored by Stanhope in the third quarter.

With a 44-39 lead in the fourth quarter, Benjamin Russell closed out the game going 70 percent from the free throw line to capture their first area win for Freeman.

"We started making free throws late down the stretch, that was just huge to be able to close the game out from the line," Freeman said. "Like I told them, if you close it out from the line - you finalize it. That you're done with this thing. And they did that, I was super proud of them."

Corey Millner, Benton and Foster accounted for 38 of the programs' total points which proved that the Wildcats relied heavily on their youth in the win. Benton and Foster are freshmen while Millner is a sophomore.

"It goes back to that practice time," Freeman said. "We didn't have that when the season had begun. When the season finally rolled around we had nine days from the end of football to our first game. That's not enough prepatory time. By not having games, most people don't think it's a good thing. But when you have a young team that's trying to learn a system the more reps of them seeing that system gives them more confidence."

The Wildcats came away with the 65-57 victory to improve to 3-2, 1-0 overall.

Regional Sports Director

Darius Goodman graduated from South Carolina State University in 2015 and returned to Georgia as a sports journalist. 2017 Award-winning sports journalist in Georgia now in Alabama looking to tell the stories of the community.