Wellborn led 29-26 at halftime and extended that advantage to 10 points midway through the third quarter. At the point, Ranburne coach Stephen Bailey said the Bulldogs switched to a man-to-man defense, forced some quick shots and began to score in transition.
Dylan Wiggins had seven of his 11 points in the third quarter, and Blake Young drilled two 3-point baskets. Ranburne led 44-43 after three quarters, but the Panthers scored the first two baskets of the fourth.
Bailey said senior Jay Smith then went to work for Ranburne (16-8). Smith scored 14 of his game-best 18 points in the fourth, including a 6-for-8 effort at the free-throw line. Smith also nabbed five rebounds.
Brayden Wilson had 10 points and seven rebounds. Wiggins added four rebounds, three assists and three steals to his line. Kyle Lovvorn recorded eight points and five boards.
Corri Tignor led Wellborn with 16 points. Devron Taylor scored 15 points for the Panthers. Landon Machristie and Jordan Montgomery each tallied seven points.
Friday, Ranburne hosts the loser of Monday’s Area 9 championship game between Lanett and LaFayette in sub-region play. Wellborn travels to take on the Lanett-LaFayette winner.