Prep Basketball: Central Cabarrus boys 76, South Rowan 66
By Sean Rinehart
CONCORD — The Raiders did all they could to hang on throughout their opening game, but Central Cabarrus had too much firepower for them to keep up in a 76-66 defeat.
“This is a tough place to play,” said head coach John Davis. “We needed to be focused, and we weren’t.”
If there was one thing this game did not lack, it was intensity. Both teams were attacking the lane with every possession, either getting points or drawing fouls. It appeared that South Rowan had a great opportunity to win the game after holding the lead following a strong first quarter showing.
However, the Vikings started to pour it on and went into the half up by eight, which included a buzzer-beating three pointer by leading scorer Dey’Quan Heath.
Coach Davis admits his team is young and that can lead to costly mistakes.
“We gave up too many second chance points,” said Davis. “We looked like we were in a daze for a little bit.” One player who did not look dazed was senior guard Qua Neal. He helped pace this Raider team and contributed 14 hard earned points.
South boasts two talented young players in Shawn Spry and Robbie Sherrill. Both will be needed in order for the Raiders to make some noise during the season. Sherrill, a freshman who runs the point, turned in 9 points and contributed on both sides of the court with his high motor. Spry is a sophomore who can definitely shoot the rock. He was South’s leading scorer with 15 points.
While second chance points can kill a comeback effort, the same can be said for missed opportunities at both the three point line and the foul line. The Raiders combined to miss 17 free throw opportunities; they also missed every three point attempt they took.
As South mounted a comeback effort in the third quarter, emotions and intensity ran high. Viking guard Brandon Greene was called for a technical foul after shoving one of the Raider players. Sophomore guard Shawn Spry quickly drained two free throws following the technical. However, the Vikings took advantage of every opportunity South Rowan gave them. Viking forward Anthony Mullins turned in a strong performance with 13 points, but more importantly, he contributed four pivotal blocks that set the tone for his team.
Coach Davis said he told his team that “…in order to become like iron, you have to be tested by fire.” He went on to say that he knows his team can play better, and he expects nothing less. “I know we played hard, but we will perform better.”
CENTRAL CABARRUS (76) — Heath 20, Mullis 13, Young 8, Klugh 8, Greene 8, Spease 7, Atkins 7, McNair 3, Young 2, Wagoner, Furr, Jarvis.
SOUTH ROWAN (66) — Spry 15, Neal 14, Lambert 10, Sherrill 9, Allen 8, Medlin 6, Parker 3, Buchannan 1, Tyler, Glenn, Goodman, Washington, Ouellette, Garlin.
S. Rowan 19 11 17 19 — 66
C. Cab. 15 23 15 23 — 76