Throwback Basketball: Salisbury 64, East Rowan 55
By Jordan Honeycutt
CHINA GROVE ó What began as a Salisbury rout against East Rowan quickly turned into a back-and-forth, down to the wire contest, in which Salisbury prevailed 64-55 in the Scooter Sherrill Throwback tournament Saturday.
East trailed 27-10 early but focused on defense and hitting threes in the second half to overcome that deficit and tie the score several times in the second half.
The Mustang alums even led by three with about seven minutes to go, but Salisbury used the height and athletecism of Rob Harris, Marvin Dixon and Leonard Owens to escape with the victory.
Owens, who played college ball for UTEP (Texas-El Paso), scored 12 points, as well as grabbing numerous big rebounds and driving and dishing the ball to Dixon and Harris in the paint.
ěThis is fun, I didnít play in it last year and everybody is just having fun and Iím just glad to be in it,î Owens said.
ěWe got a little uninterested and lazy in the second half, but give East credit. They started tightening up their ěDî and hitting threes, which is what they always did when I was in high school.î
Harris led the Hornet attack with 15 points, including several defensive plays which he immediately turned into ferocious one-handed slams.
Last yearís star, Dixon, chipped in with 14 points.
History was made in this game, as Shayla Fields became the first woman to play and score in the alumni tournament, as she put home five points.
Fellow Lady Hornet Bubbles Phifer also played, but did not score.
Pacing the game for the Mustangs was Eric Taylor with a game-high 17 points, while Kurt Misenheimer scored 12 and Shawn Eagle dropped in 10.
Taylor used his trademark hustle and fiery intensity to try and pump up his teammates to steal one, but by falling just short, East still remains winless in the tourney.
With the game tight down the stretch, East turned to trying to nail threes and then fouling Salisbury, which was successful at first, but then Randall Jones began knocking down the freebies to close out the Mustangs.
ěIím glad that everyone competed hard and we got this one,î Owens said. ěBut we will definitely have to bring it a lot harder (today) if we are going to keep winning.î
By escaping East, the Hornet alums set up a semifinal showdown with South Rowan, led by Carlos Dixon.
It will be brother versus brother as Carlosí older brother Marvin will look to guide Salisbury back to the finals for the second straight year to take on West Rowan.
EAST ROWAN (55)ó Taylor 17, Misenheimer 12, Eagle 10, Lefko 6, Weber 5, Hopkins 3, Frick 2.
SALISBURY (64) ó Harris 15, Dixon 14, Owens 12, Jones 10, Fields 5, Drye 4, Turner 4, Phifer, Hamilton, Dalton.
East Rowan 21 34 ó 55
Salisbury 34 30 ó 64