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Whitehead leads Stampede past Pickens County

Pickens County’s Bobby Bradford (11) takes a jump shot as Paul W. Bryant’s Tony Whitehead (34) attempts to block during their game Friday night at Bryant High School. Bradford scored 16 points. Whitehead scored 14. (Photo by Erin Nelson )

COTTONDALE | Tony Whitehead and Dexter Hood made sure they had a reason to celebrate on their Senior Night.

Whitehead scored 14 points Friday night to lead the Paul W. Bryant Stampede to a 65-38 victory over Pickens County.

Paul W. Bryant (25-3) was ranked No. 2 in the latest Class 5A poll. Pickens County, a three-time defending state champion, fell to 14-7.

Along with Whitehead and Hood, seniors honored before the game included Fred Stewart, Demontae Duff, William Wilson, Charles Taylor and James Currington. Hood and Currington were introduced last as team captains. Then the Stampede bolted to a 38-17 halftime lead.

"They played exactly how I wanted them to play," said Paul W. Bryant coach Shon Peck-Love, whose team completed a second straight regular season by going undefeated at home. "I was nervous about this game because I knew this was a dangerous Pickens County team. They took us to overtime down there (in Reform).

"I know we had a lot of distractions surrounding Senior Night, but they came out real focused and got off to a good start."

Whitehead led the Stampede with nine rebounds and had two blocked shots and a steal. Hood had 12 points, three steals and a blocked shot. Kevin Holland scored 11 points and dished out four assists. Currington had seven points and five rebounds. Marcus Anthony had six points. Anthony hit a 3-pointer to give the Stampede a 61-29-lead.

"It’s tough," Peck-Love said. "We’ve got quite a few guys that can score the ball. The great thing about it is they’re unselfish. If one guy’s having a good night, they look for that guy. It’s really hard for a team to focus on one guy."

Bobby Bradford scored 16 points to lead the Tornadoes. Devonte Simon had six points, six rebounds and four assists. Rhakwan Betts and Laron Thomas scored four points each.

Pickens County ends the regular season Monday, facing Greene County in Reform. Paul W. Bryant will host the Area 7 tournament. The Stampede plays Brookwood at 7 p.m. Friday.


Reach Andrew Carroll at or at 205-722-0223.