The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC


December 5, 2012

Cougar boys win, girls turn it over 62 times

TARBORO — PINETOPS – Playing team and fundamentally sound basketball is two of the key things SouthWest Edgecombe Cougars head coach Anthony Burns wanted from his team in their rematch against the Nash Central Bulldogs Tuesday night. He got both of them from his team as they defeated the Bulldogs 67-61 in non-conference action. SouthWest improves to 2-1 in the young season and they got their revenge after an early loss this season to the Bulldogs.

"We played well and didn't give up," Burns said. "This game was a little different then the first time we played them because we were ready to play."

Two of the leaders were senior captains Javin Hinton, who led the Cougars with 19 points and seven rebounds and Anthony Coley who added 13 points and 10 rebounds.

"We have harped on Javin and Anthony as captains to lead us on the floor," Burns said. "I like to give my captains the leadership position to be the floor generals and those two stepped up and did a heck of a job."

Both teams were back and forth throughout much of the first quarter. With 3:27 left in the first, Fabrion Bandy hit a three-pointer from the wing to give the Cougars a 13-8 lead. After Darrin Williams hit one of two free throws, Hinton responded for the Cougars and hit back to back jumpers to give the Cougars an 18-14 lead with 44 seconds left. The Cougars forced the Bulldogs to turn the ball over on the ensuing possession and Coley drove to the basket and hit a layup. The Bulldogs added a basket to end the quarter and SouthWest led 20-16 after one.

Turnovers and missed opportunities hurt the Cougars in the second quarter, but they didn't give up and continued to battle through the mistakes. With 3:50 left before halftime, Hinton hit a six foot jumper inside the paint to give them a 25-23 lead, but the Bulldogs responded right back and forced two consecutive Cougar turnovers and scored on both miscues by the Cougars to take the 27-25 lead with 3:06 left. Hinton then hit a layup and Quay Wooten answered with a put back off of a missed shot with 1:12 left to tie the game at 29-29. Nash Central scored five straight points and then Bandy hit a layup and was fouled at the buzzer. He missed the free throw and SouthWest trailed 34-31 at the half.

The Cougars turned the ball over 10 times in the first half and seven came in the second quarter while forcing the Bulldogs to commit 10 turnovers.

"I told the guys at halftime to keep fighting and work hard," Burns said. "We played good in the first half except for few mistakes."

The Cougars were eager and came out with a spark to start the third quarter. They opened up the quarter on a 10-3 run. Coley and Wooten hit a basket apiece, Hinton hit two shots and Cazmear Allen hit jumper during the run.  The Cougars led 47-44 after three.

It was back and forth throughout the fourth quarter with both teams putting a couple of mini runs together, but the Cougars continued to fight like their coach had asked them to. With 2:40 left in the quarter SouthWest led 60-54 and forced the Bulldogs to turn the ball over and Hinton hit Coley on an outlet pass and Coley threw the ball down with authority on a two handed dunk to give the Cougars the 60-54 lead. After another Bulldogs turnover, Wooten made a layup. Nash Central then scored two straight baskets, but Bandy answered right back for SouthWest and gave them a 64-58 lead. Hinton then hit one of two free throws on a technical foul after the Bulldogs a called a timeout and didn't have any remaining. Coley then hit a pair of free throws to seal the win.

SouthWest turned the ball over 24 times and forced the Bulldogs to turn it over 22 times. The Cougars converted the turnovers into 16 points.

Burns was pleased with his teams performance in the second half and was proud of them for fighting back through the mistakes.

"We just have to keep working hard and continue to get better," Burns said. "We are still not great but we are decent. I won't say we are good yet but if we keep working then we will get better."

Burns said the key to the win was his guys didn't quite and played hard the entire game. He said his team was playing with a lot of heart and he was pleased with his bench play.

Lady Bulldogs 75

Lady Cougars 21

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