JD Davison, Calhoun boys basketball cruise into AHSAA Final Four with win vs. Thorsby

Nick Alvarez
Montgomery Advertiser

The largest crowd of the week filled a socially-distanced Garrett Coliseum. And why wouldn't they? The main event of the AHSAA Southwest and Southeast Regional Finals took the court at 3 p.m. on Friday afternoon. 

He wore the No. 3 on a dark-blue jersey. He work black and neon Nikes. The public address announcer had to ask the fans to refrain from flash photography. Twice. 

It took JD Davison, the top-rated point guard in the nation, 31 seconds to satiate the crowd with a dunk after slipping behind the defense. Despite not stuffing the stat sheet, Davison showcased his dominance as Calhoun defeated Thorsby, 66-47, in the Class 2A Southwest Regional final. 

The viral Alabama signee registered 19 points, 11 assists and four rebounds. He scored or assisted on the game's first nine points and Calhoun's first 22. Davison's dribble moves, field goals, even his close misses, drew reactions from the crowd. 

Calhoun's J.D. Davison (3) is defended by Thorsby's Sawyer Sellers (5) in their AHSAA Regional finals game at Garrett Coliseum in Montgomery, Ala., on Friday February 26, 2021.

There was the "Ooh" when he went behind the back before passing to an open shooter. The cheers that came on the dunks. And even laughter when Brody Barnett traveled after Davison skied through the air on a fast break looking for a block. 

Davison's next performance is on March 3 against Midfield at 4:30 p.m. in the Bill Harris Arena at the Crossplex in Birmingham. 

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"I'm just trying to have fun while I'm doing it," he said. "... I got two more (games), so I'm on the grind right now." 

The Tigers (15-7) led by seven after the first quarter, 13 following the second. The Rebels shot 38 percent from the field as the Tigers' full-court press helped force 22 total turnovers. In the second quarter, Thorsby was able to work inside for five straight field goals, but then Davison rotated down and the lead expanded. 

Calhoun's J.D. Davison's shoes in the game against Thorsby in AHSAA Regional finals action at Garrett Coliseum in Montgomery, Ala., on Friday February 26, 2021.

He featured his passing more in the second half. Davison completed a no-look bullet pass in the half-court. He found cutters while saving loose balls, his body hovering out of bounds.

After a layup in which he cradled the ball through his legs, a fan shouted "That's why you're the McDonald's Man.

Davison never left the court as Starr emptied his bench. His last highlight, a drop-step windmill in the final minute, was a treat for the crowd, he later admitted.

A bigger than average crowd turn out for the Calhoun vs. Thorsby game at Garrett Coliseum in Montgomery, Ala., on Friday February 26, 2021.

Davison stopped in the tunnel and posed with a young fan for a photo as he left the court, the stands mostly empty. After one last moment was captured, Davison turned and jogged away. 

"I at least try to give them one thing to watch because I know they came for me," Davison said.