ET Basketball: Mount Pleasant Tigers roll to 97-64 win over Pine Tree Pirates
Jan. 2, 2018 at 10:47 p.m.
Jermaine Lewis sees the bigger picture and is encouraged. This even after his Pine Tree Pirates endured a 97-64 drubbing at the hands of the Mount Pleasant Tigers on Tuesday night.
The Tigers took full advantage of 10 first period Pirate turnovers and an eight minute spell without a field goal.
"I think our kids started out with some good energy. But when they put a little pressure on us, we didn't handle it real well," Lewis said. "My message to the kids is just continue to play hard. We played hard tonight, but just didn't finish well. They out-scrapped us tonight."
The Pirates have now faced arguably the two toughest teams in District 16-5A with Sulphur Springs and Mount Pleasant sporting a combined mark of 35-8 and 4-0 in loop play.
"We're finding out there's a big difference from playing at 6:15 and playing at 7:30. The only kid we have with much varsity experience is J.J. Sparkman," Lewis explained.
"The rest of the kids played on the junior varsity. The game speed changes from a JV to varsity game. And I think that got to us tonight."
Things started well enough for the Pirates when Nate Reese dropped a 3-pointer after the opening tip and Isaiah Lawson's transition layup at 7:07 gave Pine Tree a quick 5-0 lead.
Pine Tree proceeded to turn as cold as the freezing temps outside Pirate Center, while Mount Pleasant scored the final nine points of the first quarter.
Jaiden Womack converted a couple from the line to give the Pirates a 7-6 lead with 4:10 showing in the period. That would be the last points Pine Tree managed the remainder of the quarter.
The Tigers (2-0, 17-5) built a 14-point lead less than a minute into the second stanza after Dorian Glinton scored on a putback and Christian Himes made an easy hoop for a 21-7 advantage.
That was just part of a 36-point eruption in the second period from the super-talented and extremely quick striped cats.
Pine Tree (0-2, 7-9) had its moments in the quarter and wound up posting 24 points. A Kevin Savage trey at 3:58 pushed the Mount Pleasant lead to 37-13.
The deficit swelled to 50-22 after Josh Morris drained a 3-pointer with under a minute.
Credit the Pirates for closing with a flurry as they outscored the Tigers 9-3 in the waning moments of the first half.
J.J. Sparkman, who finished the night with 27 points, nine boards and four blocks, keyed the close with an old fashioned three-point play just prior to the halftime horn.
Glinton keyed a 12-4 run to open the third period for the Tigers. Glinton led a a quartet in double figures for Mount Pleasant with 19 points.
Anterius Beard finished with 17 points, Savage added 15 points and Buddy McGill netted a dozen. The Tigers wound up dropping eight 3s.
Pine Tree is on the road Friday at Greenville, while Mount Pleasant returns home to host Marshall.
(Follow George Whitley on Twitter: @GPigskinprof)