Lady Devils win 57-32, Poplarville boys take home 70-54 victory on senior night

Published 7:00 am Thursday, February 12, 2015

Hornets senior Anthony Martin finishes a tough shot against PRC defenders. Photo by Dart Spiers

Hornets senior Anthony Martin finishes a tough shot against PRC defenders.
Photo by Dart Spiers

Two local schools faced off on the hardwood on Tuesday night as the Pearl River Central Blue Devils traveled to Poplarville to take on the Hornets in non-divisional basketball action.
Before the game, the Hornets held a brief ceremony to honor their senior basketball players, Anthony Martin and Keith Dotson.
Both seniors scored in the first quarter and helped give their team an early lead, but Pearl River Central forward Donte Stephens brought the Blue Devils back with seven first quarter points. Stephens closed the quarter by beating his man and driving the paint, finishing with an emphatic two-handed dunk that gave PRC an 11-10 lead.
Poplarville responded in the second quarter as Martin and Hornets sophomore Gary Travis sank back-to-back three-pointers.
On the ensuing possession, Travis found sophomore teammate Tyler Griffin open underneath the basket for an easy lay-in that gave Poplarville a 20-13 lead.
PRC senior Mason Cunningham sank two three-pointers in the second quarter to keep the Blue Devils within striking distance.
Martin had 17 points at halftime, helping the Hornets earn a 30-23 lead.
Blue Devils senior Terek Whitehead provided a spark in the second half. He scored six points in the third quarter and drained the opening shot of the fourth quarter to cut the Hornets lead to 44-40.
Whitehead scored 12 points in the fourth quarter, but Poplarville responded every time they were in danger of losing their lead.
Travis sank a three-pointer that initially looked to be an attempt at an alley-oop pass to Martin.
On the ensuing possession, Dotson forced a steal and scored off the turnover. Travis then made another great pass to find Martin open for a three-pointer that sealed the game. The Poplarville boys won on senior night by the final score of 70-54.
In the girls’ game, the Lady Devils got off to a quick start. Junior guard Claire Lumpkin made two three-pointers in the opening minutes, and senior Brandi Lee scored five of her team’s 15 points in the quarter. The Lady Hornets were able to keep pace by getting to the free throw line. Sophomore guard Zanaisha Turner got to the free throw line three times in the first quarter and led the Lady Hornets in free throw attempts throughout the game.
The PRC girls found themselves in early foul trouble as Lee, Lumpkin and Kim Gutierrez each had two fouls in the first six minutes of the game.
The Lady Devils pulled away in the second quarter with a 19-6 scoring run.
The PRC girls had active hands on defense all night and converted a number of steals into transition baskets on the offensive end of the court.
The Poplarville girls played hard until the final whistle, but the early deficit was too much to overcome. PRC took home the victory with a final score of 57-32.
The Pearl River Central boys’ and girls’ basketball teams will host home match-ups against Perry Central on Friday.
Poplarville will prepare for their district tournament, which will be held at Moss Point next week.

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