The Seabreeze Sandcrabs (18-5) didn’t win the district championship, but they secured a spot in the playoffs by beating their crosstown rivals, the Mainland Buccaneers (15-9) 50-40 Friday, Feb. 6, at Seabreeze.
The two had previously celebrated wins on each other’s home floor during the season, but it was the Sandcrab fan section that concluded the game by singing “Na Na Na, Hey Hey Hey, Goodbye.”
From the jump ball, Seabreeze never surrendered its lead over Mainland, running out to an early 7-0 lead. For much of the game, the Buccaneers often made attempts to cut the lead, but they always failed. The Bucs got as close as 45-40 late in the game, but Seabreeze knocked down its necessary free throws to win and advance to the District 5-6A semifinals and end Mainland’s season.
“It felt good knowing that beating Mainland would put us in the playoffs,” said Alex Loyd, led all scorers with 16 points, nine rebounds and four steals. Terrell Ivey also finished in double figures with 12 points.
Cyrus Fagan led Mainland with 14 points, and Marcus Brunson had 11.
The following day, Seabreeze hosted Deltona for the district championship and came up short 58-50. The game was surrounded by much controversy, including a disagreement about Ivey fouling out. Multiple record takers had him down for a different number of fouls.
Loyd also led the Crabs with 17 points, with Ivey adding 13.
The Sandcrabs will play the Lake Minneola Hawks in the regional quarterfinal Thursday, Feb. 12, in Minneola.
“Our mentality is to stay strong, trust each other and get the win,” Loyd concluded.