Neshoba Rockets pick up region wins on the road
Wednesday, January 22, 2014 12:00 AM
Both Neshoba Central basketball teams picked up Region 3-5A victories on the road last week in prep basketball action.
The Neshoba Central boys dropped a 71-40 decision at Ridgeland and then bounced back to top Canton High School 71-62. The Rockets entered the week with a 13-4 overall record and 1-2 in the region.
The girls, meanwhile, defeated Ridgeland 42-34 but then lost a 46-42 decision at Canton. The Lady Rockets are also 1-2 in the region.
Both teams will be at home for a pair of region games this week. Neshoba Central was to host Germantown on Tuesday and Ridgeland on Thursday.
Lady Rockets Coach Fred Morris has always stressed defense and that hasn't been the problem so far this year.
"We are playing good defense and holding teams to where we can beat them," Morris said. "But we are having trouble scoring. So far, we haven't been able to score a lot of points.
"We played a good game against Ridgeland and played good defense against Canton. Canton has a good team but if a few more shots had gone in, I felt like we could have beaten them. We just need to get more confidence in our shooting."
Neshoba Central led 11-5 after the first quarter in its game at Ridgeland. Both teams put in eight points in the second quarter and the Lady Rockets led 19-13 at the half. Neshoba Central would outscore Ridgeland 23-21 in the second half to hold on to the win. Danisha Marshall led the Lady Rockets with nine points while Katlyn Duke and Andria Carter both added eight points.
Neshoba Central would lead early in their game with Canton as they went up 14-8 at the end of the first quarter. Canton battled back to cut that lead by two - 20-18 - at the half. The Lady Tigers went up 36-35 by the end of the third quarter and outscored the Lady Rockets 10-7 in the final eight minutes of play. Hannah Williams led the Lady Rockets with 16 points.
The week went just the opposite for the Rockets as they lost to Ridgeland and came back to beat Canton. That victory may be a good omen for Neshoba Central as the region tournament will be held at Canton in February.
"We hope so," Neshoba Central Coach Jerry Byrd said. "As I have said all along, this is a young team and to win on the road is big.
"We had two starters out and we just didn't come to play against Ridgeland. We had a lot better effort against Canton. Everyone was there and it really made a difference."
Ridgeland jumped out to a 19-4 lead over the Rockets by the end of the first quarter and never looked back. TJ Ben led Neshoba Central with 14 points.
Ben would score 27 points to lead the Rockets past Canton. Neshoba Central led 23-10 at the end of the first quarter and held the Tigers off the rest of the way. Bobby Anderson added 12 points while Gary Willis added 13 and Grant Willis scored 11.