Patriots Grab an Ugly Win
The Pinecrest boys used a late 13-0 run to defeat Richmond County 61-52 in a "whistle-tootin'", foul-marred affair at James Moore Gymnasium Tuesday evening.
Josh Scales led the Patriots with 18 points while Seth Maness and Tony Allbrooks chipped in with 12 and 11 respectively. Adam Wire grabbed 14 rebounds to go with eight points, four assists and four steals.
The Patriots take a 4-5 conference and 9-10 overall mark into tonight's 7:30 p.m. clash at Hoke County.
"I think Jarrin Wooten said it best in our locker room," Patriot coach Mike Apple said, referring to a comment made by his sophomore center. "He'd rather have an ugly win than a pretty loss. That's exactly what I think we got tonight."
In a game that the Patriot coach described as "bizarre," his team led 2-0 before the first tick of the clock. Maness sank a pair of technical free throws after an official noticed one of the Raiders dunk a ball in pregame warm-ups.
Neither team was making much headway against the other until a deuce and a trey by Maness gave the Pats a 25-19 lead late in the second period. Then when the Raiders' Melvin Ingram objected too strenuously to a non-call on his drive to the basket, Maness was sent to the line again and made two more technical free throws, extending the lead to eight points.
Richmond coach David May reacted vehemently and his team responded with a pair of steals, leading to four points in a row and a 27-23 half-time deficit.
After the intermission, Apple became the animated coach. The Patriots had three fouls called on them in the first 38 seconds. With just under two minutes left in the period, Richmond was already shooting the double bonus.
Ingram's drives to the basket sparked a rally that put the Raiders in front 41-37 before the Pats cut the margin to one on a three by freshman Cedric Threadgill as time expired in the third period.
In the third place game of the Holiday in the Pines Tournament last month, the Patriots held a 50-39 lead over the Raiders with under four minutes to play in the game. It disappeared in an 11-0 run and the Raiders went on to win 59-55.
"We really picked up the intensity," Wire said of Tuesday's turn-about. "We switched to a box and one and took out Ingram and that helped. We didn't want to lose again in the last four minutes.
"We really needed help from everybody, especially at the end of the game."
Ingram, who finished with 11 points, made 1-for-2 at the line, breaking a 48-48 tie with 3:39 left in the game. The Patriots then scored 13 points in a row before Derrick Wiley made a meaningless three for the Raiders in the final minute.
Wire had three steals and two baskets in the last quarter, and sophomores Scales and Allbrooks combined for 12 Patriot points, including six straight made free throws by the latter.
At times in the game, the young Patriot guards struggled under the defensive pressure of the visitors.
"What can you say except they're ninth- and 10th-graders," Apple offered. "I really had a sense tonight I was back at Union Pines, being the jayvee coach watching my guards play. They were doing some good stuff and they did some horrible things. They're all trying hard, and they all have a bright future."
This was the third meeting of the teams this season with the Patriots winning both of the conference games.
Richmond 10 13 18 11 52
Pinecrest 11 16 13 21 61
Richmond -- Ingram 4 3-8 11, Jones 4 1-2 10, Douglas 2 7-9 11, Joy 4 0-2 9, Sellers 0 0-0 0, Wiley 2 0-0 5, Griffin 2 0-0 4, Stroman 0 2-2 2. Totals 18 13-23 52. Pinecrest -- Wire 4 0-3 8, Wooten 3 1-3 7, Scales 6 4-4 18, Brown 0 0-0 0, Threadgill 1 0-0 3, Maness 3 4-4 12, Allbrooks 2 6-8 11, Brewer 1 0-0 2, Sprouse 0 0-0 0, Breeden 0 0-0 0. Totals 20 15-22 61. Three-point goals: Richmond 3 (Wiley, Jones, Joy); Pinecrest 6 (Maness 2, Scales 2, Allbrooks, Threadgill).
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