Plymouth takes third straight Atlantic title

Published 9:16 am Saturday, February 17, 2007

By By BRIAN HAINES, Sports Writer
CHOCOWINITY — Basketball fans got their money’s worth on Friday as the Atlantic Conference championship game between No. 1 seeded Plymouth and third-seeded Roanoke was everything that a title game should be.
Filled with physical play, defensive battles and clutch performances, Friday’s championship game came down to the wire but, in the end, Plymouth prevailed 58-51.
With the win the Vikings have now won both the Atlantic Conference regular season championship and the tournament championship for three straight years.
The playoff-tested Vikings showed savvy in the big spots and was able to ward off a late Roanoke charge to keep their title streak intact.
Vikings’ veterans Whitney Stokes and Sakina Brown refused to see their streak come to an end as they combined for 43 of Plymouth’s 58 points.
Stokes played a dominant overall all game and led all scorers with 23 points, scoring from everywhere on the court.
Brown, who was locked in a physical battle with Roanoke’s star guard Shale Dolberry for a majority of the game, bullied her way to 20 points.
Brown was also a major factor on the defensive end as well.
Dolberry was quieted for three quarter, but exploded in the fourth for 10 of her 13 points.
Redskins’ freshman Emoni Jones led the Skins in scoring with 14, but foul trouble limited her playing time in the fourth.
Roanoke outscored the Vikings in the second half 34-31, but the Redskins could not overcome its poor offensive play in the first quarter.
Turnovers and poor shooting killed the Redskins early as it got outscored 12-4 in the first and could never make up the difference.
For Roanoke, Friday’s game was its second consecutive tight battle. The Redskins escaped with 54-52 win over Williamston on Thursday, then had to come back to Chocowinity and play again on Friday. Though the team may have been a little tired, Exum would not use it as an excuse for his teams early woes.
The win gives the Vikings a first round home game in the sectional tournament which will begin on Feb. 20th. Hooker said his team will most likely face off against Camden.
Roanoke 4 12 13 15 19 — 51
Plymouth 12 15 15 16 — 58
Roanoke (51)
Emoni Jones 14 Moore 7, Lavasia Taylor 12, Green 2, Shale Dolberry 13, Hall 2.
Plymouth (58)
Sakina Brown 20, Whitney Stokes 23, Young 4, Sutton 7, James 2, Norman 2.