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GAC blows out Temple in first round

Staff Photo: Jonathan Phillips. GAC's Trent Wiedeman (44) goes up for two as Temple's Tony Ross, right, collides with him on Friday.

Staff Photo: Jonathan Phillips. GAC's Trent Wiedeman (44) goes up for two as Temple's Tony Ross, right, collides with him on Friday.

NORCROSS -- The full-court pressure was unfair.

By the end of the first quarter Friday night, the Greater Atlanta Christian boys were on a pace to score 148 points. They had forced 15 Temple turnovers, quickly asserting their dominance in the first round of the Class AA state basketball playoffs.

The top-ranked Spartans (28-1) continued the rout from there, calling off the press after the opening quarter in an 87-27 victory at the Long Forum.

"We wanted to establish the tempo of the game early (with the press)," GAC boys coach Eddie Martin said. "We felt like we could get after them right there."

Did they ever.

Temple had 11 turnovers in its first 12 possessions and had attempted just one field goal, that one swatted away by GAC's Trent Wiedeman. Of the visitors' 15 first-quarter turnovers, 11 were Spartan steals.

Malcolm Brogdon had five steals, helping his team build a 25-2 edge that grew to 37-6 by the end of the first quarter. Martin had seen enough intensity in the first eight minutes, the kind he wants throughout the playoffs.

"I wasn't going to press anymore, not up 30 points," the coach said.

Martin liked his team's halfcourt defense, too. GAC's starters, who sat out the entire second half, built a 62-12 halftime lead as Temple made 2 of 19 field goals and had 19 turnovers.

The Tigers made 5 of 36 shots (13.9 percent) overall.

"I thought we played pretty well defensively," Martin said.

GAC's Trent Wiedeman had 16 points, seven rebounds and five assists, while frontcourt mate Elliott Long also scored 12. Brogdon finished with 12 points and a team-best nine rebounds, Paul Dawson had 11 points and A.J. Davis scored seven off the bench.

The Spartan reserves outscored the Temple starters 25-15 in the second half. Trent Boyd had 12 points and freshman point guard Collin Swinton had seven rebounds and six assists, all in the second half.

GAC made 36 of 60 field goals (60 percent).

Kendall Lawson, Temple's 6-foot-7 post, had 12 points on 12 of 18 free throws. Despite his presence on the inside, GAC had a 47-18 rebounding edge. GAC will host Lamar County on Tuesday.