Eastern Wayne drops Wilson Beddingfield
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on February 19, 2008 3:00 PM
What a difference a few days off can make.
Looking 100-percent recovered from a lopsided loss to conference power Kinston last week, Eastern Wayne opened the Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference tournament with a 65-56 win over Wilson Beddingfield.
"We have been trying to get the guys to play loose and have fun," Warrior coach Marvin Bowman said. "We have been working on taking care of the basketball and playing together."
Four players scored in double figures for the fourth-seeded Warriors, who travel to defending ECC regular-season champion Kinston on Wednesday.
Beddingfield (2-23 overall) opened up an early lead in a defense-filled opening quarter. Freshman point guard Daquan Langston led the Bruin attack with six points. Cody Kirkham kept the Warriors close by burying a pair of jumpers.
"Cody shoots the ball very well, usually in spurts, and he made some big shots," Bowman said.
Trailing 11-10 after one quarter, the Warriors (9-13) began to flex their muscle inside. Eastern Wayne crashed the boards and built a four-point lead in the final minute before halftime.
Knowing his team needed a lift going into the break, Langston caught an inbound pass at halfcourt and heaved a 30-foot jumper, that banked home to get the Bruins within one at 26-25.
Both teams played efficient on offense in the second half as rebounds and turnovers factored into the overall outcome. The Warriors extended their lead to 12 points in the final quarter and Daviyon Whisonant ran the offense with precision.
"Daviyon's experience and leadership are so big for us," Bowman said. "We were really glad to have him able to go tonight after the hand injury."
Whisonant dished out a pair of key assists, and sank a late layup to lead his team to victory. Kirkham paced the Warrior offense with 13 points, while Orlando Midgett chipped in 12. Langston and Terry Davis scored 22 and 17 points, respectively, for Beddingfield.
Kinston, ranked No. 3 in the NCpreps.com 3-A poll, easily handled Eastern Wayne twice during regular-season play. The Vikings have won 21 of 22 games in ECC play, including the 2007 conference tournament.
"We have to have a good night and play a lot better than last time. But it only takes one good night," Bowman said.
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