Mooresville boys 53, South Rowan 52
By Bill Kiser
MOORESVILLE ó South Rowan boys coach John Davis is never satisfied with a loss.
But there was a lot the Raiders can take away from a 53-52 loss to NPC foe Mooresville on Friday.
Despite getting a season-low 12 points from Hunter Morrison, South Rowan (2-3, 1-2 NPC) fought back to give the Blue Devils (2-2, 2-1) fits over the final two quarters.
“I thought we played well, especially in the third quarter,” Davis said. “I thought we played better … but the game is more and more about runs. You see teams get on a roll and knock down four or five points real quick, and you have to keep the guys thinking that our run’s coming.
“We made our run, but you’ve got to give Mooresville credit ó they made their free throws down the stretch.”
Chris Patterson scored 17 points and freshman Shawn Lesler had 16 for Mooresville, which led by as many as 13 points in the first half before taking a 34-24 advantage into the break.
Lesler scored 13 points in the first half, with his third 3-pointer giving the Blue Devils a 22-9 lead early in the second quarter.
Even with Morrison struggling ó he went 3-for-13 from the field, including 1-for-7 on 3-pointers ó his 3-pointer with 5:50 left in the third quarter kicked off South’s comeback.
The Raiders went on to outscore Mooresville 18-4 in the third period ó the Blue Devils’ only points came on a pair of Patterson layups ó and tied the game at 38-all on an Addison Corriher layup with 1:38 left.
Morrison then put South ahead, banking in a layup with 28 seconds left before feeding B.J. Grant for a jumper to give the Raiders a 42-38 lead.
“We’re multi-dimensional,” Davis said. “We’re small, but our guards are good with the basketball.”
Mooresville fought back to regain the lead. Lesler’s 3-pointer with 5:31 left put the Blue Devils up 44-42.
That set off a back-and-forth battle, with South Rowan tying the score three times, the last at 49-all on Corriher’s follow of a missed 3-pointer with 1:33 left.
Patterson then hit three of four attempts from the free-throw line over the next 40 seconds to put the Blue Devils back ahead 52-49.
South’s Dakota Walker, who finished with 12 points, hit a layup with 23 seconds left to cut the Raiders’ deficit to one point. Patterson made another free throw to push Mooresville in front 53-51.
Morrison had a chance to tie the score but missed the back end of a one-and-one. The Raiders also missed two potential game-winning 3-pointers in the final 12 seconds.SOUTH ROWAN (52) ó Walker 12, Morrison 12, Shaver 9, Corriher 8, Davis 6, Grant 5, Houston, S.Johnson.
MOORESVILLE (53) ó Patterson 17, Lesler 16, K.Johnson 6, I.Johnson 5, Wilson 4, Willis 2, Sutton 2, Blackwood 1, Leach, Powell, Hux, Ryan.
S. Rowan 9 15 18 10 ó 52
Mooresville 19 15 4 15 ó 53