Fourth-quarter rally falls short for WCDS boys
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on January 21, 2012 11:07 PM
Wayne Country Day staged a thrilling fourth-quarter comeback against archrival Greenfield on Friday night.
The Chargers came up short and the result was a 72-60 loss on the Coastal Plains Independent 1-A Conference boys' basketball scene.
"I was really pleased with the overall effort because I thought we played our best game of the year tonight," Chargers head coach Terry Jones said. "We never gave up and we battled, but it just wasn't enough to beat a quality team like Greenfield."
The game appeared to be heading towards a blowout as the Knights took control in the opening three minutes and jumped ahead 9-2. The Chargers settled down and weathered the storm until the end of the quarter, and regrouped on the sideline.
Greenfield stretched the lead to 24-11 early in the second quarter, but went cold from the field before the half. Wayne Country Day hung tough and trailed 33-21 at halftime.
A rocky third quarter essentially sealed the Chargers' fate. With his team ahead 40-22 midway through the period, highly-touted collegiate prospect Sam Hughes drove down the left baseline and threw down a one-handed jam.
"Greenfield has so many weapons that it's hard to believe but a guy like Hughes can get lost in the defense sometimes," Jones said. "Then you look up and there he is throwing down a dunk or hitting a pull-up shot."
The Knights led 48-29 after the third quarter, but that is when the Charger offense finally came alive.
Deshar Thomas, Hil Tanner and Brandon McCarter combined to hit five 3-point baskets in the final period as Wayne Country Day cut the lead down to 10 points in the final two minutes. The trio scored all 31 of the Chargers' points in the final quarter.
"I thought we got our best game out of some guys tonight," Jones said. "Which is great, but it makes me wonder where that big-time effort is every game. If we want to compete for a shot in the postseason tournament we need to have this kind of effort consistently."
Thomas paced Wayne Country Day with 25 points. McCarter added 19 points and 11 rebounds. Tanner tallied 12 points.
Hughes led the Knights with a game-high 26 points and seven rebounds. Aaron Roundtree added 10 points and nine boards. T.J. Hinnant and Jordan Sharpe each scored 13 points in the win.
Wayne Country Day (6-10 overall, 1-2 CPIC) travels to Faith of Rocky Mount on Tuesday.