Mustangs pound the glass to victory

Photos by Timothy Ramsey

Mustangs pound the glass to victory
January 25
04:03 2018

The snow and ice we received last week forced many area basketball teams to reschedule their games.  On Saturday, Jan. 20, Parkland and North Forsyth played a makeup game where the Mustangs used their ability to crash the offensive boards as a means to overwhelm the Vikings in the second half giving them a 59-49 win.

The Vikings were giving the Mustangs all they could handle early on.  Caution was the name of the game in the first quarter as neither coach wanted to give the other team any confidence.

The game began to open up somewhat in the second.  Parkland used their opportunities to run scoring easy baskets when presented while the Vikings used their offensive sets to create driving lanes for their guards to penetrate and kick.

A late run by Parkland at the end of the half gave them a slim 29-24 lead going into intermission.

“In the first half we knew that everyone had been on a little snow break so we knew our kids would be a little sluggish,” said Parkland head coach Cory Baker.  “We just wanted to be the group that came out with the most energy.”

North Forsyth head coach Will Bell, felt great about how his team started off the game.  He thought the fact they were able to get in one practice last Tuesday really helped them in terms of not being rusty.

“I thought my guys played well, and I thought we executed well in the first half,” said  Bell,  “Defensively they did what they were supposed to and offensively we took great shots that allowed us to take a lead in the first and keep it close at the half.”

Things took a turn for the worse to start the second half for the Vikings.  Parkland went on a run that saw their lead balloon to double digits very quickly.  North Forsyth seemed a little shell shocked by the sudden burst by the Mustangs.

Parkland further stretched their lead into the fourth quarter.  The Vikings never backed down as they made a run of their own late in the quarter but it was not enough as the Mustangs held on to win.

“The second half we come out and made two boneheaded mistakes, giving up two fouls on the glass,” said Bell.  “Parkland just out rebounded us and our kids didn’t get in there and mix it up for rebounds very well.”

“I thought they forced us to take shots they wanted us to take versus the shots we were supposed to take,” he continued.  “We had kids that didn’t take smart shots at times and it wasn’t the same as it was in the first half.”

The Vikings were led by Darius Williams and Wanya Mautia, who both scored nine points in the game.  Bell stated that Williams is their go-to guy as he is the only returning player from last year’s team.  He says he likes having Williams on the floor because he is like a coach on the floor that leads the younger guys.

According to Baker he felt the Lash/Chronicle tournament gave his team an enormous confidence boost.  He says while they have lost a couple of games since then he feels they are getting back on track. 

“Everybody has stepped up and everyone is believing in themselves a lot more and we just have to keep it rolling,” he said.  “We have to learn that one game won’t be exactly the same as the next and everyone needs to do their part to help the team win.”

The Mustangs were led by Denoris Wardlow (15 points) and Markell Lloyd (12 points).  Baker also had high praise for A’Kiem Spaugh, who rebounded very well on the offensive glass.  Baker said, “I can always depend on a kid that plays with a lot of heart and energy.”

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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