WCDS boys move on in NCISAA 1-A playoffs
By News-Argus Staff
Published in Sports on February 25, 2004 1:56 PM
Wayne Country Day boys basketball coach Steve Weir couldn't have said it any better after his club's 61-55 victory against visiting Halifax Academy -- "A lesser team would have folded."
The opening-round win in the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association Class 1-A playoffs sets up a meeting against rival Greenfield School at 5:30 p.m. Thursday. That game will be played at Ravenscroft in Raleigh.
Halifax coach Gerald Rook thought he had a winning game plan as his Vikings were seeking their first win against Wayne Country Day on their third attempt.
"If we can get our three-point shots, and control the boards, we've got a good chance," he said.
The Vikings came out on top in both categories, 9-8 on three-pointers, and 30-23 in rebounds, but it wasn't enough.
Both teams started in overdrive and never went back to a lower gear.
A basket by Alex Proimos and a 3-pointer by Kevin Logan quickly erased a 4-0 Halifax lead. Logan added another three and two foul shots to pace a 20-point first quarter. Spenser Briggs, co-high scorer on the night with 19 points, added seven.
Logan, Briggs, and Shivar Person gave Halifax an opening as they each were assessed with two fouls halfway through the second quarter. Guard Robert Davis responded with his second of five 3-pointers on the night. His two baskets kept his team down by only six, 35-29, at halftime.
Both teams battled to a 26-26 draw in second-half scoring.
The Chargers, however, won the game by playing smart basketball. They committed only three turnovers in the final 16 minutes to Halifax's six. Wayne Country Day also benefited from the free throw line, shooting 7-of-11, which helped it eliminate Halifax from the postseason.
The Vikings, however, did not leave without a fight. Josh Langley's layup at the end of the third quarter cut the Chargers' lead to 45-43 heading into the final eight minutes.
Although Logan hit Briggs with the "alley-oop" pass to start the final quarter, and Kris Exum throttled Langley with a dunk -- his third of the night; the Vikings did not get rattled. T.J. Jones and Davis put Halifax Academy back in front 49-48 with back-to-back 3-pointers.
Briggs, Person, and Oscar Ball combined to put the game away offensively as well as defensively. Ball's 3-pointer made it 53-52 at the 3-minute, 39-second mark. Person went 4-for-7 from the foul line down the stretch, while Briggs had three baskets. The trio also did an outstanding job on ball control, killing the clock, and keeping the ball out of Halifax hands.
"We missed too many easy shots," said Rook. "You have to make the big ones when they count," he added.
Weir had nothing but praise for the Halifax offense.
"They shot as well as any team we've played," he said. "We tried everything and couldn't stop them. As a senior, I expected Shivar to step it up at the end of the game. Briggs is a special, unselfish player, and best of all, only a junior."
Neither coach was particularly pleased with the tournament seedings that brought together teams that have already played multiple times.
"I've never liked to do that," said Rook. "It would seem to me that they could have drawn this up a little bit differently."
"It's tough," said Weir. "It's really difficult to play someone four times, but we'll do what they tell us to do."
2004 N.C. Independent
Schools Athletic Association
Class 1-A playoffs
Halifax 15 14 14 12 -- 55
WCDS 20 15 10 16 -- 61
HALIFAX ACADEMY (9-12)
Robert Davis 2 5 0-0 19; T.J. Jones 2 4 1-1 17; Josh Langley 5 0 3-4 13; Ryan Newsome 2 -0 0-1 4; Carter Long 1 0 0-0 2. TOTALS -- 12 9 4-6 55.
WAYNE COUNTRY DAY (15-7)
Spenser Briggs 8 1 0-0 19; Shivar Person 1 1 4-7 9; Jeff Franklin 1 2 0-0 8; Kevin Logan 0 2 2-2 8; Alex Proimos 2 1 0-0 7; Kris Exum 2 0 2-2 6; Oscar Ball 0 1 1-2 4. TOTALS -- 14 8 9-13 61.
Three-point baskets -- Halifax 9 ( Davis 5, Jones 4), WCDS 8 (Logan 2, Franklin 2, Proimos, Ball, Briggs, Person 1). Turnovers -- Halifax 12, WCDS 9. Total fouls -- Halifax 12, WCDS 9. Fouled out -- none. Technical fouls -- none.
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