Panthers stumble

Published 7:49 pm Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Plymouth’s Devonte Spruill (right) looks to score as Northside’s Antonio Woods (23) defends during the Vikings 58-34 victory over the Panthers on Tuesday at Northside High School. (WDN Photo/Brian Haines)

The upstart Panthers viewed their showdown with last year’s state runner up Plymouth as a measuring stick-type of contest and on Tuesday they found out they still have a ways to go before they catch up to the Vikings.
Playing in its first game of the year, Plymouth picked up exactly where it left off last season as it topped Northside 58-34.
The start of the Vikings (1-0) basketball season was delayed by more than 30 days thanks to their NCHSAA 1-A state championship football run and on Tuesday they showed no signs of rust.
Junior Adrian Moore unleashed his deadly jumper to the tune of 20 points to lead all scorers. Center Devonte Spruill did a nice job defensively on Northside’s star big man Edrice Adebayo and scored 12 points and dished out some nice no-look passes out of the post for Plymouth.
The Vikings ran the floor well and played an unselfish brand of basketball that led to a total of eight players entering the scoring column.
“They played team ball and the kept encouraging each other,” Plymouth coach Marvin Davenport said. “They stayed in the system and that’s the key.”
It was both teams’ Four Rivers Conference opener on Tuesday and Northside (7-1) got off to a strong start as it held a 7-2 lead early in the first. However, the Vikings went on a 9-1 to go into the second quarter up 11-8.
Over the next two quarters the Vikings would outscore Northside 36-18 to put the game out of reach.
“We couldn’t match their intensity,” Northside coach Mike Proctor said. “We still have a lot to work on. We just didn’t play very well.”
Northside was led by Adebayo and Antonio Woods who scored 11 points each, but the supporting cast went cold on Tuesday and could not provide the scoring punch that has been a key recipe in the team’s early season success.
The loss was the team’s first of the season and a growing pain for a young Panthers team.
“We’ve got some young guys on this team and we just have to take some positives out of it,” Proctor said. “This is what conference is all about and we just have to play with some more intensity and do a better job of moving the ball around on offense. We played pretty poorly on offense, but (Plymouth) is also the best defensive team we’ve seen so maybe that has something to do with it too.”

Plymouth    11    18    18    11    —    58
Northside    8    8    10    8    —    34
Vikings (58)
Devonte Spruill 12, Adrian Moore 20, Sheppard 7, Hill 4, McCray 8, Holloway 2, Pinner 2, Sharpe 3.
Panthers (34)
Edrice Adebayo 11, Antonio Woods 11, Sherman 3, Howson 2 Washington 7.