HANCEVILLE — Cold shooting from both the foul line and beyond the 3-point line meant that Gardendale couldn't hold on to a 10-point lead in the second half, as Athens came back for a 47-44 victory in the Yule Tide Classic championship game Saturday at Wallace State.
The Golden Eagles clawed their way back in the fourth quarter, and took the lead with about two minutes left to play. A 3-point shot at the buzzer fell short for the Rockets.
Gardendale shot 13-for-32 (41 percent) overall from the floor, but hit just 1-of-14 (7 percent) from 3-point land, and were a cold 15-of-27 (55 percent) in free throws.
Juan Jackson led the Rockets with 16 points. Gabe Hill grabbed 10 rebounds.
Nathaniel Pots led all scorers with 24 points for Athens (10-2).
Gardendale (11-5) hosts Pell City on Friday night.