July 15, 2024 Donate

Chelsea, Chelsea Sports, Sports

Chelsea Holds Off Saline in SEC Cross Over Battle

It was expected to be a battle and it was just that as Chelsea held off Saline 59-57 in a SEC crossover battle Tuesday night.

The teams went tor-to-toe all night and it wasn’t decided until the final seconds when Joey Cabana intercepted a Saline pass and was able to run out the clock as the Bulldogs handed the Hornets just its second loss of the season.

The game featured three of the best players in the Ann Arbor area in the Bulldogs Cabana and Jake Stephens and the Hornets super soph Jonathan Sanderson and they did not disappoint.

Back to back baskets by the Hornets Lincoln Keyes helped give Saline an early 7-3 lead, but Chelsea would answer with a 12-3 run to take 15-10 lead after one. Stephens scored seven in the quarter and Regan Plank hit a big triple late in the first for Chelsea.

Plank was giving the job of covering Sanderson for most of the night and Plank’s tight defense forced him to work hard for his team-leading 27 points on the night.

Regan Plank tries to slow Saline’s Jonathan Sanderson Tuesday night. Photo by Mike Williamson

Cabana hit back to back triples early in the second, but the Hornets stayed close with five points from Tommy Carr and another Keyes basket.

Chelsea held a six point lead but a Caleb Washington triple at the buzzer cut the lead to 30-27 at the half.

Saline took the lead 36-35 in the third on a LaDainian Wood lay-in, but Chelsea would close out the quarter with seven straight points from Cabana and a 9-2 run for a 44-38 lead after three.

Chelsea would hold a seven point lead 55-48 with under two minutes left a Sanderson free throw and basket cut the lead to 55-51.

LaDainian Wood goes to the basket for two for Saline. Photo by Mike Williamson

Two free throws by Cabana pushed the lead to 57-51, but the Hornets weren’t done when Sanderson hit s triple to make it 57-54.

Cabana hit two more free throws for a five point lead when Sanderson launched a triple from the “C” near midcourt that went through to make it 59-57.

Chelsea turned the ball over and Saline had one more chance to tie or take the lead, but Cabana stepped in front of an inbounds pass near midcourt and was able to dribble out the clock as The Bulldogs held on for the win.

Cabana and Stephens combined for 54 of the Bulldogs 59 points on the night, while Cabana finishing with 30 and Stephens 24. Plank finished with three points and Drew Blanton two for Chelsea.

Jonathan Sanderson launches a triple against Chelsea. Photo by Mike Williamson

Sanderson finished with 27 points, including 11 in the fourth quarter to lead Saline.

Keyes and Carr scored nine each for the Hornets. Woods chipped in with eight points, Washington three, and Peyton Widen one.

Chelsea improved to 5-5 overall and will continue there juggernaut of an early season schedule when they travel to D2 seventh-ranked Adrian for the SEC White opener Friday night. It will be the seventh time in 11 games this season that the Bulldogs will face a state-ranked/honorable mention team.

Saline (8-2) returns to the court Friday night when they travel to rival Ann Arbor Pioneer for a key SEC Red matchup.

Photos by Mike Williamson