Vikings advancePublished 10:35pm Wednesday, February 15, 2012
ROBERSONVILLE — The Cougars scratched away at an 11-point halftime deficit but in the end No. 1 Plymouth was able to pull away from No. 4 South Creek to earn an 83-61 victory in the second round of the Four Rivers Conference tournament.
The Vikings’ duo of Carl McCray and Kendrick Pitt were deadly from start to finish as they combined for 41 of Plymouth’s 83 points.
McCray led all scorers with 21 points while Pitt added 20 to help Plymouth (17-4) advance to the conference tournament championship game where they will face the winner of the No. 2 Camden-No. 3 Riverside contest on Friday at 7:30 p.m.
“The players are happy. They’ve been playing and practicing hard since Day 1,” Plymouth coach Marvin Davenport said. “We’ve set a goal to get better and work harder each time we step into the gym and if we do that good things will happen.”
The Cougars (15-11) put a scare into the Vikings early as they rode the back of Jaquon Durham’s nine points and to trail Plymouth by a slim 18-16 margin going into the second quarter.
It was in that second quarter that the Vikings sailed away from the Cougars by outscoring them 23-14 to go into the break up 41-30.
In the third quarter South Creek recaptured some of its first quarter magic and used a strong defensive presence to trim Plymouth’s lead to down to as little as six.
Addarius Lawrence and Durham would lead South Creek with 10 points each but there effort was not enough to overtake the Vikings, who are the No. 9 ranked team in the state according to NCPreps.com
“In the third we stayed patient and stayed within the game plan and played together,” South Creek coach Darryl Pittman said. “In the fourth quarter we made a couple of mistakes and started pointing fingers and putting our heads down. We stopped thinking like a team.”
McCray overcame a rough third quarter to score nine fourth quarter points while Khalil Sheppard added six of his 13 points in the final stanza to push Plymouth into the tourney title game.
Plymouth 18 23 16 26 - 83
South Creek 16 14 18 13 - 61
Khalil Sheppard 13, Kendrick Pitt 20, Carl McCray 21, Adrian 3, Holloway 5, Spruill 4, Hill 7, Rogerson 3, Knight 3, Ferebee 3.
Ampley 2, Adams 9, Addarius Lawrence 10, Jaquon Durham 10, Williams 5, No. 34 4, Parker 1, Hembrey 2.