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Cooper's sharp shooting leads East Hall boys in win against Flowery Branch
Vikings senior finished with seven 3-pointers, 33 points
Basketball2022
East Hall's Clete Cooper (5) gets the ball and makes a 3-pointer against Flowery Branch on Jan. 21, 2022 in Flowery Branch. Photo by Bill Murphy

When Crete Cooper hit the third shot of the basketball game, he was certain about one thing: it was going to be one of those good nights.

Not only was it just one of those nights, it was a career-night for the senior guard. 

He finished with 33 points, before leaving the game with less than a minute to play, in a 69-53 win against Flowery Branch.

“Normally, when I hit that shot in practice, I don’t miss the rest of the time,” Cooper said. 

The shot was off one leg from beyond the perimeter. It sliced through the bottom of the net and it certainly seemed like every shot after that was just as accurate.

“When he gets hot, there isn’t much a team can do with him,” East Hall coach Tommy Yancey.

Cooper was virtually unstoppable. 

He made seven 3-pointers, drove through the lane, knocked down mid-range jumpers and nailed free throws. 

There wasn’t much Flowery Branch’s defense could do to stop his attack.

Even the Falcons’ student section couldn’t distract him. 

Cooper was feeding off their energy.

“I love when the fans get hype,” he said. “I play really well when they get like that.”

Whenever Cooper was not scoring, he made sure to find teammates for easy baskets. 

Will Barton and CJ Agborsanagaya finished with 10 points apiece for the Vikings. 

Leading the way for Flowery Branch (11-10, 3-5) was Tyleek Worth with 13 points, while Jackson Owens added 12 points.

EAST HALL GIRLS 51, FLOWERY BRANCH 45: East Hall girls basketball team set out to execute a defensive game plan and it worked.

The Lady Vikings beat Flowery Branch on the road Friday night. 

With the win, East Hall sweeps the regular-season series.

“We were going to play them man to man and make someone else beat us,” Lady Vikings coach Justin Wheeler said. “Our girls played hard and did what we needed to do.”

Wheeler’s approach to the game was to keep Flowery Branch’s Bella Brick and Shaina Kriews from getting hot shooting. 

East Hall’s defense didn’t necessarily stop them both. 

Midway through the third quarter, Kriews would not let the Lady Vikings (10-9, 3-5) get too far ahead.  

The Shorter signee helped tie the game at 30 apiece with 3:30 to play in the third. 

She went on a small scoring spree.

However, she was not the only one catching fire during that span. 

The Lady Vikings’ defense locked in to the game plan. 

East Hall also responded on the offensive end of the floor to Kriews’ dominance.

Audrey Griffin, who roamed the interior, helped make sure to keep Flowery Branch to one shot and get position, giving East Hall second chances at scoring on offense.

Flowery Branch (7-12, 3-5) tried to ride Kriews’ offensive push, but it wasn’t enough against a team committed to the game plan.

“You want her to take tougher shots,” Wheeler said. “If she makes it, you can live with it. You just want to make sure no one else goes off.”

Kriews finished with a game-high 23 points for Flowery Branch.

Griffin led East Hall with a team-high 17 points. 

Also for East Hall, Alexis Burce added 12 points, while Amari Burce chipped in with 10 points.

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