01/17/13 — North Lenoir boys stay unbeaten in ECC

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North Lenoir boys stay unbeaten in ECC

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on January 17, 2013 1:47 PM

North Lenoir relied on its size when things got tough.

The Hawks' forwards answered the call every time during an 83-73 win over Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference rival Eastern Wayne on Wednesday night.

"We wanted to get the ball inside early and often tonight, and we did that," North Lenoir head coach Anthony Lofton said. "There were times when Eastern Wayne presented us with some problems with their quickness, but for the most part I thought we did a good job."

The first half was filled with long scoring runs by both teams.

North Lenoir broke a 12-12 tie in the first quarter with an 8-0 run and led 20-14 after one period.

Eastern Wayne rallied briefly in the second quarter as foul trouble began to plague both sides. Despite the improved offensive game, the Warriors found themselves down 40-31 at the half.

North Lenoir (9-7 overall, 4-0 ECC) built a 16-point lead in the opening moments of the third quarter with a 7-0 run.

That is when Eastern Wayne head coach Glen Darden decided to try a new strategy. He put in four guards and just one forward, and employed a full-court press.

"We had a lot of success picking (North Lenoir) up full court beginning late in the third quarter," Darden said. "Once we got the momentum, we were able to close the gap a little bit."

Eastern Wayne pulled to within four points midway through the fourth quarter when Quavis Holloman hit a runner in the lane to make the score 74-70. That was close as the Warriors would get.

North Lenoir figured out the press and used its size advantage to create a pair of layups.

"Going small was a great coaching move by coach Darden," Lofton said. "We had trouble with the press, but in the end our big guys were able to convert a couple of opportunities and get us a win."

Jaquez Jones led North Lenoir with 20 points. Braxton Davis added 15 points. Billy Summers and Tyree Hough each had 12 points.

Holloman paced Eastern Wayne with 18 points. Micah Smith and Malik Richard each added 13 in the defeat.

The Warriors (5-9, 2-3) play host to South Johnston on Friday night, while the Hawks visit Cleveland.