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FARRIS & THOMAS HOLIDAY TOURNAMENT

Warriors wear down Firebirds

Posted on January 2, 2022

SportsSchool Sports
Southern Nash’s Jackson Vick (20) puts up a shot as Hunt’s Jeremiah Williams falls to the floor during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Sheldon Vick | Special to The Enterprise

Southern Nash’s Jackson Vick (20) puts up a shot as Hunt’s Jeremiah Williams falls to the floor during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Hunt’s Lucas Robinson (20) defends as Southern Nash sophomore Jordan Vick has the ball during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Sheldon Vick | Special to The Enterprise

Hunt’s Lucas Robinson (20) defends as Southern Nash sophomore Jordan Vick has the ball during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Southern Nash’s Jackson Vick (20) puts up a shot as Hunt’s Jeremiah Williams falls to the floor during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Sheldon Vick | Special to The Enterprise

Southern Nash’s Jackson Vick (20) puts up a shot as Hunt’s Jeremiah Williams falls to the floor during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Hunt’s Lucas Robinson (20) defends as Southern Nash sophomore Jordan Vick has the ball during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Sheldon Vick | Special to The Enterprise

Hunt’s Lucas Robinson (20) defends as Southern Nash sophomore Jordan Vick has the ball during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

Hunt’s Lucas Robinson (20) defends as Southern Nash sophomore Jordan Vick has the ball during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.
Southern Nash’s Jackson Vick (20) puts up a shot as Hunt’s Jeremiah Williams falls to the floor during a Dec. 28 semifinal game of the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament at Hunt. The Warriors won 57-41.

aschnittker@wilsontimes.com | 252-265-7807 | Twitter: @aschnitt53

WILSON — For the first three quarters of the Dec. 28 showdown between the Hunt and Southern Nash varsity boys basketball teams, it was anyone’s game.

By well before the final buzzer, there was no doubt about who was going to the Farris & Thomas Holiday Tournament championship game, with Hunt using a dominant fourth quarter to take a 57-41 victory.

The Warriors (6-1) outscored the Firebirds (7-2) 19-3 in the final frame to advance to the title game for the 17th straight time. Hunt went on to claim an unprecedented fourth straight Wilson Christmas tournament championship with a 62-43 win over Fike in Thursday’s final.

Sophomore Drew Pittman led Hunt with 16 points, followed by senior C.J. Joyner with 11.

“The kids sucked it up,” said Hunt assistant coach Rodney Creech, coaching in place of Dwight Taylor, who missed the game due to illness. “I think they played extremely hard. It’s probably the hardest we’ve played all year. We played well. We seemed to get in a good flow both offensively and defensively tonight. But we stress defense and rebonding. That’s what I told them would win the ball game for them.”

Sensational sophomore Jordan Vick led Southern Nash with 16 points, as T.J. Taybron missed the game with COVID-19.

“We didn’t play well,” said Southern Nash head coach Robbie Kennedy. “... They hit five 3s in the second half. I don’t think we hit any. I think we had 17 turnovers. We were 3 of 21 from 3 and we were 9 of 18 from the free-throw line. You can’t shoot like that and win. You can’t turn the ball over. We just didn’t play well.”

In a fourth quarter that started tied at 38-all, the Warriors put on a clinic, forcing the Firebirds into mistakes on the defensive end and attacking inside out on offense. The Warriors came out firing in the final frame, taking a 46-39 lead with an 8-1 run that included 3s from Lucas Robinson and Joyner.

“Our defensive intensity picked up,” Creech said. “And once we picked up our defense, it always more than likely spills over to your offensive end. So I think that was the difference in the ball game, the defensive pressure that we put in the half court in the fourth quarter.”

Hunt continued to pull away, and Pittman gave the Warriors an 11-point lead with a 3 with under four minutes to play, and that pretty much proved to be the dagger as Hunt cruised to the finish line.

“We were in the locker room, and everyone got all hype,” Joyner said. “That really boosted our confidence. I feel like that’s going to help us throughout the season and get us through tough games that we’re going to have to play at the end of the season.”

Hunt roared out of the gate in this one, scoring the first nine points by attacking with its transition game before a Vick 3-pointer put Southern Nash on the board. The Firebirds settled into the game from that point, but the hot start allowed the Warriors to take the all-important first-quarter lead at 15-11.

The Firebirds finished the first half hot, with a 3 by Vick giving Southern Nash its first lead of the game at 25-22, and another trey from Thomas Copeland at the buzzer giving the team a 28-22 edge going into halftime.

With the Firebirds up five with under four minutes left in the third quarter, Hunt struck back with a 7-0 run.

A Jordan Scott 3 made it a two-point game, and then a technical foul against the Firebirds led to a pair of free throws from Clay to tie the game and a dunk from Jones to put Hunt back in front for the first time since the first half. Southern Nash then tied the game before Hunt’s near perfect finish.

“I’m very excited,” Joyner said. “It’s my last year, I want to do it all. I want to win it all.”

SOUTHERN NASH (41)

Jo. Vick 16, Ja. Vick 9 Mitchell 8, Copeland 3, Witt 3, Baker 2

HUNT (57)

Pittman 16, Joyner 11, Clay 9, Jones 9, Scott 5, Williams 4, Robinson 3

Score by quarters:

SN 11 19 10 3 41

Hunt 15 7 16 19 57

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