CRESTVIEW — A packed house was on hand to give Crestview senior basketball players Jordan Waddell, Jonathan Buckelew, Roman Donofro and Clay Hancock a fitting sendoff on Senior Night against Walton on Friday.
With Buckelew and Donofro leading the way with 13 points each, the senior quartet did their part to make the night one they would never forget as they went out and beat the Braves 67-31.
Hancock added nine points on three third quarter 3-pointers and Waddell chipped in six as they foursome combined for 41 points.
The last two minutes of the game was played with a running clock.
"It was a real emotional night, but we fought through it and came together for the win," Buckelew said. "It's so special me Roman and Clay have been together since the sixth grade.
"They beat us earlier in the season and this shows how far we've come. This is two big wins in a row and it gives us momentum going into the district tournament."
The Bulldogs (12-10) trialed of exactly one minute and 52 seconds.
A Deshun Tucker basket seven seconds into the game gave the Braves (15-8) their only lead of the night.
The lead lasted until Donofro hit his first 3-pointer of the night a the 6:01 mark in the first quarter. Baskets by juniors Denzel Ware and Ronnie Baylark made the score 9-2 and the rout was on.
Baylark, Ware and Jerry Aaron each had four points in the first quarter as Crestview led 15-9 at the end of the period.
The Bulldogs took control of the game in the second quarter behind eight points from Donofro and five points from Buckelew.
Crestview's lead was 33-19 at the half and the Braves never got any closer the rest of the way.
The Bulldogs opened the third quarter with a 10-0 run as Baylark and Hancock hit back-to-back 3s and Ward and Waddell followed with 2-point baskets.
A Tucker score and an old fashioned 3-point play by Randolph briefly stopped the Bulldog run, but not for long. Crestview closed out the third quarter on a 14-7 surge to go up 57-31.
Buckelew and Waddell closed things out for Crestview in a 10-0 fourth quarter. Waddle scored on a pair of layups and Buckelew was perfect on six tries from the free throw line.
Baylark joined Buckelew and Donofro in double figures for the Bulldogs with 11 points. Aaron had eight points and Ware six points.
Randolph had 12 points for the Braves.
"These games are very difficult because they are so emotional so you never know how they are going to play," Bulldog coach Ken Meisner said. "The kids surprised me because they were in tears during the ceremony. But they came out, and God bless them did every thing they could to win."
Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletin’s sports editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524