By Brandon Speck/NEMS Daily Journal
BOONEVILLE – Host Booneville set up what could be a much-anticipated rubber match in the playoffs with a 65-46 win against Mooreville on Tuesday night.
The Blue Devils avenged a seven-point loss to the Troopers with a resounding victory in a battle of Class 3A contenders.
“That was a whooping. We didn’t shoot the ball well, didn’t handle the ball well,” Mooreville coach Jeff Tally said. “We didn’t play real good defense, didn’t block out. We didn’t really do anything well tonight. You’ve got to give them all the credit.
“We couldn’t throw it in a washtub tonight.”
Kenny Paul Geno dunked even over his own man, Jordan Miller, in front of a decorated student section sporting an oversized Geno cutout. Jack Nichols had 18 and Antonio Crump 10 for Booneville. Austin Timms had 13 for Mooreville (15-3).
“You have to have balance,” Booneville coach Michael Smith said. “I think they’ve gotten comfortable and everybody is getting more confidence. We understand roles a little bit better.”
Booneville (11-3) took a 12-point lead into the break and went on a run in the third. An Isaiah Witherspoon two gave Boone-ville a 52-28 lead and Mooreville didn’t get much closer than it did on Kelsey Scott’s 3-pointer to cut the lead to 19.
Before the game, Booneville watched film of an earlier-season 47-40 loss against the Troopers.
“I thought they did a great job of transferring what they saw into the game,” Smith said.
Miller missed the first game against Mooreville and left in the third quarter of Tuesday’s game with a sprained ankle.
(G) Booneville 60, Mooreville 57: Jasmine Allen gave Booneville (8-5) its first lead with 1:54 to play. She had 20 points and hit a pair of free throws with 5.3 seconds left after Erica Whitten’s steal.
Tiana Allen had 17 for Mooreville (8-9).