Blue Devils return home after long road trip

Published 8:01 pm Tuesday, January 7, 2014

After an exciting finish Friday night, both Picayune and Pearl River Central return to the basketball court tonight.

The Blue Devils beat the Maroon Tide in a buzzer-beater 61-59 Friday night. It was the fourth straight road game for the PRC boys, and first year head coach Matt Noblitt’s team won three of those outings.

Friday’s win over arch-rival Picayune was the biggest of the season by far for the Blue Devils, who stand 7-9 on the year.

“It was huge, to come in here and beat a very good team on the road was big for us,” Noblitt said. “The key for us was that we had everyone step up at some points and make a contribution in some form for us.”

Tristan Tate had a big basket as well as two game winning free throws in the final minute of play. He was one of four PRC players in double digits, scoring 11 points. Seth McCoy tallied 16, Alex Travis scored 13 and Terek Whitehead added 12 to the winning cause.

Also, Drew Cruz had a key three point play late in the game and also came up with a pair of big rebounds as well as a steal on the defensive side.

Both PRC teams host Columbia tonight, while both Picayune teams begin district play on the road.

Picayune travels to Stone County for the Region 7-5A openers for both the Maroon Tide and Lady Tide.

Shemar Williams had a game high 28 points for Picayune in Friday’s loss.

“He is a monster,” Noblitt said, of Williams. “We willed them back in the game with his play. He is a special player.”

Pearl River Central returns to region play Friday, on the road against Jackson Wingfield. Picayune faces a Stone team that is 8-6 overall, while the Maroon Tide is 8-7 overall. The Tomcats haven’t played in almost two weeks, since losing to D’Iberville 67-64 in the finals of their own holiday tourney.

Also tonight, both Poplarville teams return to the court in district action.

Both the Hornets and Lady Hornets are coming of losses in Regon 8-4A play to Bay High at home Friday night.

The defending state champion Lady Tigers beat the Poplarville girls 59-9, while the Tigers upset the Hornets 55-51 in overtime.

Anthony Martin score 17 points to pace Poplarville, and Anthony Martin added 10 points for the Hornets.

Both Poplarville teams travel to Vancleave tonight. The Bulldogs are just 4-9 on the season, and 0-1 in league play. But Vancleave is coming off a big 70-38 win over Christian Collegiate Academy. This will mark the second game for Vancleave against a team from Pearl River County, as PRC beat the Bulldogs 66-46 in the finals of their own Christmas tournament two weeks ago.

Vancleave’s girls are 6-6 overall and 0-1 in league play as well. Bay High swept Vancleave in Vancleave’s only district games of the year so far.

In another game of local interest over the weekend, Hancock’s Lady Hawks remained unbeaten on the season moving to 15-0 with a 15-0 with a 64-27 home win over Ocean Springs.

The Hancock girls also open district play tonight, against always powerful Harrison Central.