12/12/12 — Third-quarter field goal drought hurts SW boys

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Third-quarter field goal drought hurts SW boys

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on December 12, 2012 1:47 PM

DUDLEY -- The Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference boys' basketball title race came down to two games played between Southern Wayne and Triton a year ago.

If the teams' first meeting of 2012 was any indication, the league title may again be decided by the Hawks and the Saints. Alex Burnett dropped in 13 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead Triton past Southern Wayne 56-50 on Tuesday night in the ECC opener for both squads.

"Triton is always athletic and they always hustle, tonight was no different," Southern Wayne head coach Dwight Smith said. "They wanted this game more than we did and they found a way to win it."

Southern Wayne started the game on fire from the floor as a pair of circus shots by Tarvis Bradshaw and a back-to-back jumpers from Ronnell Outlaw pushed the Saints in front 16-10 after the first quarter.

Triton (7-1 overall, 1-0 ECC) battled back before the half as center Ronald Elliott began to find his range. Elliott scored all 12 of his points in the second quarter and the Hawks rallied to tie the game at 28-28 at the intermission.

The Saints couldn't overcome a six-minute drought without a field goal in the third quarter.

Triton seized the lead on a jumper from Chris Eason and led the rest of the way. The Hawks built a 12-point lead early in the fourth quarter when point guard Krishawn McBryde reeled off seven consecutive points.

"We had a stretch where we could not get anything to drop," Smith said. "That is when we need to start driving the ball to the basket, but tonight it seemed like we were too passive and we kept settling for contested jump shots."

Triton also dominated the rebounding department. The Hawks out-rebounded the Saints by 12 and scored two fourth-quarter baskets off of second-chance opportunities.

"Every loose ball they were after it and they were going up to get it," Smith said. "We spent too much time watching and it cost us."

Bradshaw led the Saints with 14 points and 13 rebounds. Andrew Matthews added 10 points in the defeat.

Southern Wayne (5-2 overall, 0-1 ECC) travels to Wilson Fike on Dec. 18.