LILBURN — McEachern upset four-time Class AAAA boys state champion Miller Grove on a last-second shot in the first round of the 16th annual Parkview Tip-Off Classic.
Greater Atlanta Christian made sure, though, that the Indians wouldn’t have an opportunity for any late-game heroics in the semifinals on Monday night.
GAC jumped on McEachern early and never let up, rolling to 76-57 victory and a spot in Tuesday's championship game against Southwest DeKalb at approximately 7:30 p.m.
The Spartans (2-0) had three players combine for 67 points, with Collin Swinton scoring 25, Isaiah Wilkins adding 22 and Delano Spencer contributing 20. Swinton, the senior point guard, also had five assists and Wilkins, a 6-foot-6 junior, grabbed 12 rebounds and blocked three shots.
“Given that it’s early and we’re playing against good competition, I’m very pleased,” GAC coach Eddie Martin said. “We’re playing well offensively.”
Damon Wilson had 18 points and Freddy Brown scored 15 for McEachern, but the Indians couldn’t build on their 63-62 upset of Miller Grove in the first round.
Swinton hit a 3-point shot from halfcourt at the buzzer to give GAC a 23-15 lead at the quarter and the Spartans widened the margin to 36-22 at halftime. Swinton had 13 points and Spencer 12 at intermission.
GAC controlled the boards in the first half, with Justin Lewis grabbing nine of his 10 rebounds and Wilkins pulling down six. Wilkins also had eight points and two blocks at intermission.
The Spartans led 41-24 before McEachern cut it to 53-40 at the third quarter and was up 63-44 in the fourth.
Although GAC is still missing three football players, the Spartans, who defeated Douglas County 71-54 on Saturday behind Wilkins’ 21 points and 10 rebounds, look every bit like a potential state contender again in Class AA after winning titles in 2010 and 2011.
“We don’t have everybody yet and it’s a long season,” Martin said. “We’ll see. But off 14 practices and a couple games, I sure can’t complain very much with the way we’re playing.”
SW DeKalb 69, Chattahoochee 49
Southwest DeKalb (2-0) pulled away late in its 69-49 semifinal victory over Chattahoochee.
Emanuel Walker led the Panthers’ balanced offense with 14 points, Taboris Gibbs scored 12 and Tavaris Hall contributed 11.
Presbyterian signee Markus Terry led Chattahoochee (1-1) with 15 points.
Lassiter 54, Parkview 44
Parkview fell to Lassiter in a consolation game although just three Trojans scored in the 54-44 victory. Krishna Khatri had 20 points, Will Young scored 18 and Eric Easly contributed 16.
Lassiter (1-1) took a 26-16 halftime lead as Parkview (0-2) scored just four points in the second quarter. Malik Abraham had 12 points and T.J. Martin scored 11 for the Panthers.