Southern Wayne eliminates Cleveland
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on February 20, 2013 1:47 PM
DUDLEY -- Southern Wayne learned a valuable lesson on Tuesday night.
No win in the Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference tournament is going to be easy. The second-seeded Saints got two critical baskets from Jamiel Price in the final two minutes and held on for a 54-48 win over seventh-seeded Cleveland.
Southern Wayne plays host to C.B. Aycock on Thursday in the semifinals.
"We played selfish basketball," Southern Wayne head coach Dwight Smith said. "We got ahead early and then we stopped moving the ball. It was like every guy was worried about when it was going to be his turn to shoot."
Southern Wayne (15-7 overall) jumped on top 15-8 after one period, but watched as Cleveland guard Bobby Stenburg rallied his team. Stenburg scored seven points in the second quarter as the Rams hustled and forced a 27-27 tie at halftime.
Stenburg's scoring barrage continued in the third quarter as the teams traded baskets. Southern Wayne used a 7-0 run to take a 45-38 lead, but watched as Cleveland (6-19 overall) answered with a 7-0 run of its own to tie the game early in the fourth quarter.
Price put the Saints in front for good with less than two minutes to play with a 3-pointer from the corner. He followed with a driving layup that put the game out of reach.
"We got back to attacking the basket as a team over the last few minutes," Smith said. "That is when we are at our best. We need to play team basketball, drive the lane and find open teammates."
Price led Southern Wayne with 18 points. Ronnell Outlaw added 10 points. Jalen Roberts recorded 10 points and a team-high seven rebounds.
Stenburg paced Cleveland with 24 points and six rebounds. Gilbert King added 14 points.
"Earlier in the season (King) hurt us shooting the basketball," Smith said. "Tonight I thought we did a better job on him, but to Cleveland's credit some other guys stepped up."
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