QEA turns up heat to win opener

QEA turns up heat to win opener
November 12
00:00 2015

In above photo: (Left) DeShawn Corprew, right, scored a game-high 26 points in QEA’s season opener last week. (Right) Coach Issac Pitts gives courtside instructions from the Pharaohs bench. (Photos by Craig T. Greenlee)

For the first 16 minutes of the game, it appeared that Quality Education Academy would get all it could handle in its basketball season opener against Moravian Prep. By the end the third quarter, however, the Pharaohs left no doubts regarding their dominance. The end result was a convincing 70-43 victory on their home court last Friday.

QEA, which led 24-21 at intermission, revved up its defense in the third quarter and Moravian Prep never recovered. During that stretch, the home team went on a withering 26-10 run. DeShawn Corprew and Renathan Ona Embo combined to score 17 points in that quarter to put the game out of reach.

At the start of the fourth quarter, QEA had pushed its lead to 50-31.

Corprew, a 6-feet-5 shooting guard, finished with a game-high 26 points and Ona Embo contributed 11 points. Jaylan McGill came off the bench and provided a spark with 10 points.

“What I liked our resilience,” said Coach Isaac Pitts of QEA. “It was a close game at first and sometimes guys get down on themselves.

“But then we looked how we had played and realized that we had not put any pressure on them. The score (at the end of the first half) indicated that. So, we came out and did what we do (apply pressure) and that changed the outcome from what had happened earlier.”

The tenor of the game changed quickly at the beginning of the second half. The Pharaohs pressure forced turnovers and took Moravian Prep out of its offensive rhythm. The first two-and-a-half minutes of the third quarter was the turning point as QEA went on a 10-0 run.

“It was a matter of making the adjustment at halftime to pick them up full court,” said Pitts. “We wanted to take the ball out of their point guard’s hands and see if the rest of the team could handle the basketball.”

Tyler Hooker kept Moravian Prep in contention with his ball-handling and 3-point shooting in the first half. He was able to penetrate the defense, which enabled his teammates to get high-percentage shots.

Hooker connected on three 3-pointers in the opening half, but went scoreless for the remainder of the game. Emmanuel Nzekwesi finished with 10 points and was the only Moravian player to score in double figures.

Corprew, who has verbally committed to Arkansas-Little Rock, took the game over in the third quarter with an 11-point outburst. One sequence involving Corprew from the night stands out. From the top of the key, he sliced through defenders, elevated in traffic, and hit a floater while making contact with a would-be shot-blocker. At the end of the play, he shouted, “And one.”

“I felt that I had an excellent game in the second half,” said Corprew. “Other than that, I’m trying to get to the basket and get the ball to the shooters, so that everybody gets involved (in the offense). We’re still getting to know each other. I believe we’re going to have a very good team this season.”





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Craig Greenlee

Craig Greenlee

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