By Will Johnson
LATEXO – The Grapeland Sandies were looking to end the first half of District 20-2A competition undefeated when they hit the road last Friday night to take on the Latexo Tigers.
The Tigers have been playing well throughout the season, but recently hit a rough patch, dropping three in a row. Despite the losses, the Tigers have the inside track for a potential playoff berth as the fourth seed.
Meanwhile, Grapeland, ranked #4 in the latest TABC poll, came into the game on an-eight game winning streak and pushed it to nine following their tougher than expected 67-48 win over Latexo.
As the game got underway, the Sandies quickly found themselves in foul trouble. Both Keizion Ashford and Cadarian Wiley picked up a pair of early fouls and had to take a seat on the bench.
Fortunately, BJ Lamb picked up the slack with a pair of threes as part of his eight points in the first eight minutes of the game. Riley Murchison knocked down five points while Omarian Wiley came off the bench and scored four. Ashford and Mike Dancer closed out the period with two apiece to help the Sandies take a 21-9 lead after one.
With the spate of fouls called against Grapeland, Latexo went to the line nine times in the first quarter and made five. Unfortunately, the Tigers only converted one shot from the field. Tyler Lumbreraz paced Latexo with four, first quarter points while Sam Jones and Logan Ray had two apiece. Eli Filer made one of two from the charity stripe to round out the Tigers’ scoring in the quarter.
Even though he had two early fouls, Ashford came alive in the second for the Sandies as he poured in seven points. O. Wiley added four more to his total while Riley Murchison hit his second three of the game. Lamb, Peyton Prater and Cadarian Wiley all had two apiece to help Grapeland take a 41-20 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Malachi Reece found the scoring column for the Tigers in the second quarter with four points. Filer had three while both Jones and Ray chipped in two apiece to end the Tigers’ first half scoring.
Following the break, Latexo tried to mount a comeback and managed to shave eight points off of the Grapeland before ending the third period trailing by a score of 52-35.
Ray found his shooting touch for the Tigers as he put in six, third quarter points. Filer added four, Jones had three and Lumbreraz had two as Latexo showed it wasn’t just going to roll over.
For the Sandies in the third quarter, C. Wiley worked inside for four points while Murchison knocked down his third, three-pointer on the game. In addition, Lamb, along with O. Wiley, chipped in two apiece to bring an end to the scoring in the period.
The Tigers kept coming in the fourth quarter and whittled the lead down to 12 at one point. Ray pumped in eight points in the final quarter while Lumbreraz had three and Jones had two. It wasn’t enough to overcome the deficit, however, as Latexo fell by 19.
Grapeland’s fourth quarter points came from O. Wiley with five while both Ashford and Dancer connected from three-point land. Lamb and Prater closed out the Sandies’ scoring with two apiece as Grapeland picked up the 67-48 win over Latexo.
On the game, Latexo was led in scoring by Logan Ray with a game high 18 points. Sam Jones and Tyler Lumbreraz both netted nine while Eli Filer had eight. Malachi Reece also had four points to round out the Tigers’ point production on the evening.
The Sandies were led in scoring by Omarian Wiley with a team high 15 points. He also had 11 boards, two assists and two steals. BJ Lamb dropped in 14 points to go along with four rebounds, nine assists and three steals. Keizion Ashford put in 12 points, grabbed five rebounds, had three assists and three steals.
Also, in double figures, Riley Murchison went for 11 points and had three steals. Cadarian Wiley powered his way to six points and 10 boards. Mike Dancer put in five and Peyton Prater added four to close out the Grapeland scoring.
Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at [email protected].