Northside, Southside teams move forwardPublished 6:25pm Saturday, December 28, 2013
By JONATHAN ROWE
CHOCOWINITY — The gym was packed full of fans as the Seahawks Holiday Invitational commenced Friday night. Southside bested Oakwood, 64-60, and Northside defeated Washington, 69-56, in the first round of the round-robin tournament.
Although players, coaches and fans alike showed their sportsmanship, the tension was obvious as three Beaufort County teams were present.
The first game between the Seahawks and Eagles tipped off and proved to be an even matchup for the most part. Southside’s point guard, Donshae Miller, and his fellow starters set the tone for most of the game with fast breaks and points in transition.
“If we push and beat the other team (down the court), we can run the score up with easy points like that,” Miller said.
Southside has always prided itself on speed and transition from grueling conditioning in practice, and it showed on the court. With little known about their opponent, Southside’s head coach, Sean White, commented on his team’s physical presence and a joint effort in rebounding, helping in the victory.
“That’s probably where the majority of our points come is from transition and driving the lanes in the zone,” White said.
Despite several turnovers, Oakwood proved to be a worthy opponent, trailing the Seahawks 35-30 at the half. The Eagles would switch to a man-to-man defense in the second half and eventually bring the game down to the wire in the last few minutes of play. The Seahawks prevailed, however, with a few forced turnovers, and despite their low percentage at the free-throw line, Rashaun Moore would sink two clutch free-throws ensuring Southside’s 64-60 victory over Oakwood.
“We need to start closing out better and boxing out for rebounds and making our free-throws,” Miller said.
The Seahawks hosted the Pam Pack on Saturday night in the second round of the invitational.
The second game of the first round was quite different from the first matchup. What seemed to be a heated north-of-the-river rivalry would manifest into a very physical, emotional game. Northside established a strong presence in the post with its star sophomore, Edrice “Bam Bam” Adebayo.
“We, mainly, ran motion and tried to get the ball in the middle,” Adebayo explained.
The Panthers did just that with Adebayo dropping 24 points on the Pam Pack. Both teams would fall victim to forced turnovers and tough defensive strategy, resulting in a low-scoring first half of 27-21 in favor of the Panthers. The outcome would be sealed with the Panthers’ good ball movement and transitional points.
“We try to get the ball inside and change our defenses up to confuse people,” said Northside’s head coach, Mike Proctor.
Proctor went on to say that the use of Adebayo as an outlet when pressed and his exemplary ball-handling skills forces mismatches, leading to valuable transitional points. Several controversial calls would raise emotions in the second half of the game, bringing Washington head coach Steve Flowers a technical foul. The Pam Pack would stay in foul trouble the remainder of the game, and Northside capitalized with consistency at the free-throw line. The Panthers’ steadfast strategy in the second half, along with continuing defensive pressure brought them the victory over Washington. The Panthers faced Oakwood in the first game in the second round of the invitational Saturday night.