Senior Brantley Cozart has been selected for the Class 7A All-State team and senior Jordan Griffin[more] was chosen all-State Tournament as post-season honors were announced for the Bryant Hornets basketball team in 2011-12.
That senior guard tandem garnered all-conference honors as did senior post Quinton Motto and sophomore guard Anthony Black.
It was a landmark season for the Hornets, who made their first trip to State since 2008 and won there for the first time since 1987. And when they advanced to the State semifinals, they had won twice in State play for the first time since 1981.
And those were just the highlights of a season filled with those type of accomplishments.
“Brantley and Jordan both gave us so much,” commented Hornets head coach Mike Abrahamson. “With Brantley being all-State, that’s really a nod to him. I think there were five occasions this year where teams tried to deny him. And a couple of times, like against Catholic, it was a triangle-and-two. They were trying to deny both him and Jordan. But other teams just focused in on Brantley and I think that’s a credit to him because they knew that, in any particular game, he could get hot and go crazy like when he scored 26 against Central. The respect that Brantley got was where that came from.
“But you know Jordan right there,” he added. “Typically, every game, we put Jordan on the other team’s best player and got, usually, real good production out of both of them. Of course, Jordan had the big game at the end of the year against (eventual State champ) Little Rock Hall. He played really well against our top competition. He had a great State tournament. He just brings so much to the table, so much consistency. He led us in minutes played. We’re going to miss both of them, that’s for sure.
Of Black, the coach commented, “Anthony became a starter once we started the conference season and the games that we won, he usually played well. The games that we didn’t, he usually struggled a little bit. I think that’s a tell-tale sign of what he means to our team. To be a sophomore and to, basically, have most of the burden of ball-handling on you and be undersized and young, I thought he did a great job. The thing I love about him the most is that he’s so competitive. He’s just got that proper mindset that he approaches the game with.
“Quinton — I just can’t overstate how important he was to our team with the improvement that he made,” Abrahamson said of the 6-7 Motto. “It’s going to be the hardest to replace him. You know, with Brantley and Jordan, as much as they’ve given us, we’ve got Anthony coming back, we’ve got C.J. Rainey coming back, we’ve got K.J. Hill coming up from ninth grade and we’ve got Luke Rayburn and Strodney Davis and Marcus Wilson coming back. But we don’t have a 6-7.
“And Quinton, to be a legitimate threat to block your shot but also lead the team in charges, it just makes him — and he didn’t foul out,” the coach noted. “He only fouled out of one or two games. To lead your team in blocks and charges taken and not really foul out is very impressive. That’s something that a lot of people don’t realize. His scoring was up and down but his 6-7 presence in there with the things that he could do — and he played such a much higher motor this year. He was just really a force and we’re going to miss him a lot.”