WEATHERING THE STORM: Washington holds on to defeat Southside

Published 10:53 pm Wednesday, January 6, 2016

MICHAEL PRUNKA | DAILY NEWS STOPPING SHORT: Washington guard Sharwan Staton puts on the breaks and pulls up for a mid-range jumper. He had 14 points for the Pam Pack.

STOPPING SHORT: Washington guard Sharwan Staton puts on the breaks and pulls up for a mid-range jumper. He had 14 points for the Pam Pack.

Washington and Southside both had positive takeaways from Wednesday’s clash. The Pam Pack will continue to ride its New Year momentum following the 66-60 win, which is its second in a row. The Seahawks will build on the fight they showed in the fourth quarter.

Southside found itself down 21 points heading into the fourth quarter. The Seahawks made a change to their defense. A full-court press was implemented in an effort to force turnovers. It worked right off the bat as Pat Coffey opened the final quarter with a quick layup in transition.

“I took a timeout and gave them a heart-to-heart about playing with heart, playing hard and not giving up,” said Southside coach Sean White. “That’s one thing we pride ourselves in is not giving up at any point during the game. We changed our defense up a bit. … We pressured their point guard a little more. We made him make some mistakes. It was working for us.”

It sparked a 17-3 run for the visitors. The Seahawks were finding baskets everywhere from right in the paint to outside the arc. It wasn’t until the 4:32 mark of the period that Tykarrius Floyd scored Washington’s first field goal. Southside center Donshae Tatum answered right back with a 3-pointer that cut his team’s deficit to five, 53-48.

Five points was as close as Southside would get. Even though Washington’s offense sputtered, the team was able to make the shots down the stretch to keep the visitors from making it a one-possession game.

“It got closer than it should have been,” said Washington coach Steven Flowers. “We had a 21-point lead and we started messing around. It’s good to fight back. We did the same thing (Tuesday) night. That builds belief, so hopefully we’re doing that.”

The game was even for the first bit of the opening period until the Pam Pack offense took over. It closed the first on a 10-2 run thanks to three easy baskets in transition. Tyshawn Cobb grabbed all the momentum for Washington when he slammed home a dunk on a fast break.

The Pam Pack faithful erupted for the big play. It was one instance in which the energy shift was palpable. Southside brought a strong contingent of fans, making for a raucous atmosphere.

“That excites us when (Cobb) can do something like that,” Flowers said. “I just like noise. To me, it doesn’t matter who (the fans) are for. I just like the noise.”

Washington’s break-neck pace on offense continued to prove deadly. Southside, struggling to slow the hosts down, often found itself putting its opponent on the free-throw line. Washington earned 14 points at the charity stripe between the second and third quarters.

The win means a lot to the Pam Pack. It gives the boys a confidence boost as they prepare to host a seemingly unstoppable Farmville Central team on Friday. The Jaguars are off to a perfect 10-0 start this season and have marquee wins over the likes of Conley and Rose.

For Southside, this game may provide a blueprint to controlling Pamlico County’s sharpshooters on Friday. Pressing the Hurricanes and forcing the tempo of the game could help derail their perimeter shooting.