COVINGTON - Poor fourth-quarter performances spelled trouble for the Eastside basketball squads against visiting Elbert County on Tuesday night.
The Lady Eagles were outscored 15-7 in their 48-40 loss, while the Eastside boys trailed by as many as 15 points in the their 60-52 loss.
Elbert County 60, Eastside 52
Leading by seven points, 36-29, to start the fourth quarter, the Blue Devils jumped out to an 11-3 run to take a 47-32 lead over Eastside with 4:21 left in the game.
But the Eagles came back to cut their deficit to 51-45 within a three-minute span.
"We went man and just totally denied," Eastside coach Michael Gerald said. "A lot of times teams that are so-called pressing teams don't like to like to be pressed because they don't go against that kind of pressure in practice."
Despite a 20-point quarter by Cameron Robinson, the Eagles were too far down to get out of the hole.
"We've been waiting for a breakout game from him for a long time. He just said (to the team), 'I'm going to put you on my back and go for broke.' He came up big for us," Gerald said. "If we would've had just a little more offense from anybody outside of Cameron, we could've got a little more of a rhythm and it would've been a real close game."
Robinson had a game-high 31 points for the Eagles.
Scoring in double figures for the Blue Devils were Tray Heard (22), Rod Rucker (15) and Justin Tate (10).
Elbert County 48, Eastside 40
The Lady Blue Devils tried to force Eastside into their style of game by pressing from the very beginning.
However, the Lady Eagles were able to counter Elbert County's game plan, despite being down 13-9 after the first period.
Eastside could have taken a lead, but the Lady Eagles missed too many open layps.
"I like teams that press us. It gets us in our transition and helps us score," Eastside coach Jason Grooms said. "We had the opportunities, we just couldn't put the ball in the basket."
The Lady Eagles outscored Elbert County 7-2 to start the second frame and take a 16-15 lead.
Eastside maintained its lead until midway through the third quarter when it trailed 33-28 in the final minute.
"It seems like we're having a bad third quarter sometimes. You can't win like that," Grooms said.
Eastside was able to tie the game at 33 in the final minute of the third with a Raven Williams trey and an Ashley Crew field goal.
While the Lady Eagles kept pace with Elbert County, turnovers proved to be their downfall at the end.
Eastside turned the ball over 17 times in the second half, 26 for the game.
"We had trouble scoring. Now knowing we had 17 turnovers in the second half I know the reason why," Grooms said.
J'Quyra Moncur-Blue scored 12 points for Eastside.
Pacing Elbert County were Deanna Downer with 19 and Ariona Haygood with 10.
Manny Fils can be reached at email@example.com.