North Rowan Races Past North Moore Boys
It probably wasn’t the way the North Moore boys’ basketball team’s four seniors wanted to end their playing careers on their home court, hosting defending state 1-A champions and Yadkin Valley Conference regular-season champions North Rowan Friday.
It didn’t take long for the visiting Cavaliers to show why once again they are among the favorites to repeat as state champions as they blew to a 12-0 lead in the first two minutes of the game before the host Mustangs could score. The bigger, faster and more athletic North Rowan team went on to take a 99-40 victory over North Moore.
North Rowan clinched their third straight regular-season championship, finishing with a 15-1 league mark and 20-3 overall, while the Mustangs head into the conference tournament with a 3-13 conference record and 3-18 overall.
The Mustangs travel to second-place South Davidson Tuesday for their first-round contest, while North Rowan hosts South Stanly in its opener. The semifinals and final of the league tournament are scheduled to be played Wednesday through Friday at East Montgomery High School, with the championship game slated for Friday.
The four Mustang seniors, Paxton Chisholm, Justin Marley, Billy Person and Myatt Person started the game along with junior Dustin Morrison.
“We didn’t quit and played hard the whole game,” said North Moore coach Grant Smith. “I wanted the seniors to do well and it was important to me with them being the first freshman class I coached when I started here at North Moore. They’re (North Rowan) are very talented team and I wish them luck in the playoffs. They play very hard and do a lot of things well. We were able to play a lot kids and were able to see what they could do.”
North Rowan came out with full-court defensive pressure and created a lot of Mustang turnovers that the visitors converted into baskets. Marley scored the Mustangs’ first bucket at the 5:21 mark in the opening period. Morrison later hit on back-to-back three pointers, giving North Moore eight first quarter points. North Rowan pulled their starting five with 2:20 left in the first quarter, leading 30-8. The first quarter ended with North Rowan up 36-8.
In the second period, the Mustangs held their own, scoring 15 points while North Rowan tallied 16 points for a 52-23 lead at the break.
With the North Rowan starters playing most of the third period, they limited North Moore to only four foul shots and one field goal, a bucket by Chisholm. The Cavaliers led after three periods of action 74-29.
The only suspense left in the final frame was if the visitors could break the century mark, which they were unable to accomplish. Quashan Davis was the lone Mustang to finish scoring in double figures with 10 points, while Morrison added eight points. North Rowan’s Michael Conner was the game’s high scorer with 17 points, followed by teammate Oshon West with 16 points and Malik Ford with 12 points.
North Rowan 36 16 22 25 — 99
North Moore 8 15 6 11 — 40
North Rowan: Michael Conner 8 0-0 17; Oshon West 7 0-0 16; Malik Ford 6 0-0 12; Pierre Givens 5 0-0 11; Joe Robinson 3 1-4 9; David Chambers 3 0-0 6; Teresse Barber 3 0-0 6; Michael Bowman 2 2-4 6; Kihrey Ellis 2 0-2 4; Tyler Watlington 2 0-0 4; Raheem Kelly 1 1-2 3; Devon Tate 1 1-3 3; Timothy Bates 0 2-2 2. Totals 41 7-17 99; 3 pt. goals 6 (Michael Bowman 2, Joe Robinson 2, Michael Conner 1, Pierre Givens 1).
North Moore: Quashan Davis 5 0-2 10; Dustin Morrison 2 2-4 8; Justin Marley 2 3-7 7; Adam Bullard 2 1-2 5; Landon Auman 2 0-0 4; Paxton Chisholm 1 0-0 2; Malik Chisholm 1 0-0 2. Totals 15 6-16 40.
Three-point goals: NR 6 ( Bowman 2, Robinson 2, Conner, Givens); NM 4 (Davis 2, Morrison 2).
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