Won on the glass, Warren County outlasts Southern
Southern Vance’s Ty-Traveon Robert got his points Friday against Warren County. The Raiders’ leading scorer finished with 21, but the athletic senior was held in check on the glass.
Warren County won the overall battle on the boards too, on its way to a 75-60 Northern Carolina Conference win.
Roberts, who entered the contest averaging double-digit rebounds, was held to six on Friday.
“We have to box out,” said Southern head coach Greg Ackles. “They crushed us. I don’t know how many offensive rebounds they had but if they get one, it’s too many. They’re a big, physical team. If you don’t box them out, they’re going to get the rebound.”
Wanda Thompson stressed the same thing to her Warren County team at halftime.
“Everybody had to find their man and box him out,” said Thompson. “I think we did a better job in the second half.”
Michael Hargrove led the Eagles with 14 points as the home team improved to 4-1 in league play and 11-4 overall.
Southern dropped to 2-3 in Northern Carolina play and 5-8 overall.
Jaylen Jones scored 11 points for Warren County and Justin Fitts had 10.
The Eagles stayed in control throughout much of the game and finally put the game away in the fourth quarter when Tyler Thompson penetrated and slipped a pass for A.J. Alston, who threw down a one-handed slam. Then Jones got loose on a fast break and converted an old-fashioned 3-point play to ignite the raucous home crowd.
Southern was as close as six points in the fourth quarter, but couldn’t get within striking distance.
“We have to have more consistency,” said Ackles. “Once we get it to five, we have to have one more stop.”
Seven Eagles scored at least eight points. That’s the kind of team effort Thompson has been looking for as Warren County chases league-leading Bunn in the standings.
Friday’s game marked the first conference meeting between Southern and Warren County since 2008 and both schools’ fans helped pack the Eagles’ Nest.
“This is what you want to coach in front of,” said Ackles, coaching in his first Raiders-Eagles matchup. “You want your teams to play in front of a packed house. This was good. I look forward to when they come to play us in February.”
Qualik Shearin added 16 points for Southern, knocking down four 3-pointers.
The Raiders host N.C. School of Science and Math on Tuesday while Warren County visits Roanoke Rapids.