01/04/12 — Southern Wayne takes control of conference

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Southern Wayne takes control of conference

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on January 4, 2012 1:48 PM

Two teams with polar opposite styles of play met on the court at Eastern Wayne High School on Tuesday night.

Southern Wayne came away with a 58-45 win over archrival Eastern Wayne on the Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference basketball scene.

"We knew that (Eastern Wayne) was going to come out and try to slow the game down," Saints head coach Russell Stephens said. "We wanted to score in the halfcourt and be able to set up our defense to kind of change the tempo."

The strategy was slow to develop for the visitors as the Warriors jumped out to a 9-2 lead in the first two minutes of the game. At the end of the first quarter the home squad held a 19-15 advantage.

That is when the Saints calmed down and the Warriors went cold.

Eastern Wayne tallied just field goal in the second quarter as Southern Wayne erased the deficit and took the lead. The Warriors never recovered and continued to struggle offensively in the third quarter. The home team scored just six points, all on free throws, in the third period.

"We just simply could not get it going," Eastern Wayne head coach Marvin Bowman said. "We need three or four guys to be scoring for us to be successful and tonight there were times when no one was scoring."

The Warriors remained in the game thanks to stellar half-court defense and even closed to within four points early in the fourth quarter, but Southern Wayne (11-3 overall, 3-0 ECC) got key baskets down the stretch to seal the win.

Jamiel Price scored 13 of his game-high 32 points in the final seven minutes of the game for the Saints. Andrew Matthews added nine points in the win.

"Jamiel was big for us there at the end," Stephens said. "We had been trying to get him to get into the middle of the floor the whole game and I guess toward the end it finally clicked."

Lee Atkinson led Eastern Wayne (5-7, 2-1) with 21 points. Josiah Davis added nine points and eight rebounds in the defeat.

Eastern Wayne will look to right itself at Charles B. Aycock on Friday night. The same evening Southern Wayne will host South Johnston.