Griffin leads Lions past Eagles for key win

SUWANEE - Until recently, the Peachtree Ridge boys had just two real scoring threats.

As good as Khalid Mutakabbir and C.J. Blackwell are, they needed help. Daryan Griffin is giving it to them.

Griffin, a sophomore guard, scored 21 points Tuesday night and Peachtree Ridge never trailed in a 76-67 home victory over Collins Hill that virtually clinched second place in Region 7-AAAAA.

"He's a natural scorer," coach Keith Arrington said of Griffin. "He gives us that third option that we really needed."

Griffin, who had to work himself into good standing early in the season, scored seven of Peachtree Ridge's first 11 points and never really cooled off. He had a pair of 3-pointers and finished 9-for-10 at the foul line.

Mutakabbir also started fast, scoring 13 of his 24 points in the first half. But the senior's total was just a little over his average. Griffin had the best output of his brief, though promising, varsity career.

Blackwell finished under his average with 10 points, but the rugged sophomore had a game-high 11 rebounds as Peachtree Ridge had a 30-19 edge on the boards despite Collins Hill's height advantage inside.

Peachtree Ridge improved to 12-3 in the region with three games left in the regular season and is 15-6 overall. Third-place Collins Hill fell to 10-5 in 7-AAAAA and 15-6 overall with a second loss to the Lions.

Peachtree Ridge won 69-65 in overtime at Collins Hill on Jan. 24. This time the Lions jumped out 14-6 and led 30-21 at halftime and 53-39 going into the final quarter.

Collins Hill cut the deficit to 67-62 with 1:10 left on a 3-pointer by 6-foot-10 Jeremy Olsen. But Peachtree Ridge salted the game away at the foul line, going 9-for-12.

The Lions were just 4-for-14 on free throws in the first half, but finished the game 29-45. Darnel Jones was 8-for-10.

Saah Nimley had 21 points and five assists for Collins Hill. Reed Buck scored 14, Olsen 13 and Kameron Phillips 11.

In addition to Griffin, Peachtree Ridge got a lift from Rasheed Fischer. Playing just his fourth game after joining the Lions, the junior had seven points. He struggled at the foul line, but threw down two thunderous dunks.

Collins Hill girls 50, Peachtree Ridge 47

Crystal Chaney scored six of her 16 points in the fourth quarter - including the tie-breaking basket - as the Collins Hill girls defeated Peachtree Ridge 50-47 to improve to 6-9 in Region 7-AAAAA and 9-12 overall.

After Chaney put the Eagles ahead, Jazmin Walker clinched the victory with a free throw and rebound basket with 36 second left. Marissa Rimbert had 14 points and Walker scored eight for Collins Hill.

Peachtree Ridge, 5-10 in the region and 9-13 overall, trailed 28-18 at halftime. But the Lions outscored the Eagles 17-8 in the third quarter and led three times in the fourth quarter.

Brittany Jack had 14 points and D'Atra Sawyer scored 13 for Peachtree Ridge, which lost 40-38 at Collins Hill in the teams' first game.