IAHS handles Mooreville on the hardwood

IAHS senior guard Jake Smith gets off a shot in the paint between two Mooreville defenders. (Photo by Scotty Nichols)

IAHS senior guard Jake Smith gets off a shot in the paint between two Mooreville defenders. (Photo by Scotty Nichols)

By SAM FARRIS
Special to the Times

FULTON – Next fall, Itawamba AHS will find themselves surrounded by new faces for division matchups in athletics, including incoming adversary Mooreville, who the Indians met on the hardwood Tuesday night.

Based on initial appearance, the 4A Indians were going to have an athleticism advantage over the Troopers while Mooreville maintained more finesse in their style of play. That contrast created some interesting matchups.

The girls game was a thriller, setting a tone of physical play for the evening. The Lady Indians picked up the victory, but were tested in order to get there.

IAHS junior guard Alondra Gordon sets up the offense against Mooreville. (Photo by Scotty Nichols)

IAHS junior guard Alondra Gordon sets up the offense against Mooreville. (Photo by Scotty Nichols)

After the first quarter IAHS led by only a single point, but in the second period Amber Kelton got going to pace the offense.
Mooreville’s Shelbie Phillips tipped in a putback layup with fewer than 30 seconds to play in the half. IAHS senior Elisabeth Cleveland nailed a three on the other end, but was immediately answered back by 6-foot-3-inch Summer Price, who hit her own three at the buzzer to give her team a 25-24 lead at the break.

Cleveland picked up right where she left off coming out of the locker room, knocking down back-to-back 3-pointers, aided by Kelton on the offensive end.

Mooreville had several opportunities to tie the game late as the Lady Tribe struggled to break the Trooper press, but scrappy play by IAHS’s Alondra Gordon helped seal the deal 46-42.

The best matchup in the boys game was obvious from the opening tip: Athletic specimens Austin King and Santo Jamerson jumped it up to start the game and went right at each other to lead their respective teams.

Itawamba had a strong first quarter and closed it on a 6-0 run to lead 19-10. The Indians moved the ball extremely well throughout the first half, patiently waiting for a high-percentage look.

The Troopers didn’t ever go away, but they were not playing well, going ice cold from behind the 3-point line, their almost sole source of paydirt this season. IAHS led at the break 29-23.

The Indians began to struggle in the third, prompting head coach Darryl Wilson to send in reinforcements. Colbe Hodges entered the game and got hot quick, connecting on three straight three point attempts, to extend the lead to 14.

To create a mismatch, Wilson sent big man Cameron Orr into the game. Orr immediately made an impact, proving unstoppable inside the paint and efficient from the free throw line.

Itawamba pulled away late in the fourth so Wilson called off the dogs, as did Mooreville’s Jim Tally, and the Indians closed the night with a 63-50 victory.

Twitter: @Sam_Farris21

About Scotty Nichols

Graduate of THE University of Mississippi. #HottyToddy. I like sports. And BBQ.