Amory Panthers grab division opener

By Melissa Meador/Monroe Journal

AMORY – Pontotoc worked out of a 20-point third quarter deficit, but Amory knocked down key shots late to stay undefeated with a 69-56 win on Tuesday night.
The Warriors got within three in the first two minutes of the fourth quarter before Amory (6-0) finished the game on a 19-9 run. Devin McIntosh hit a pair of two-point plays in the run, while Dario Robinson knocked down a layup and a 3-pointer on back-to-back possessions.
“We got complacent with the lead there in the start of the fourth,” Amory coach Rob Browning said. “We took a few dumb shots, and we have to be more mature about things like that and close the game out.”
After Amory widened its lead to 20 at the beginning of the second half, Pontotoc took control on offense, scoring 14 unanswered points before the Panthers answered with a bucket from Keion Marsh.
Marcus Reed aided in the Warriors’ run, hitting a pair of two-point shots and drawing a foul on both.
Trips to the free-throw line also helped Pontotoc (5-4) narrow the lead in the fourth as they hit 10 of their 18 attempts on the night with five trips to the line in the fourth quarter alone, including a technical.
Handing it to them
“It got frustrating there in the fourth. They made a run because of our mistakes,” said Robinson, who was Amory’s leading scorer with 28 points. “You have to hand it to them because they battled back real hard.”
McIntosh also finished the game in double digits with 16 points, while Trei Freeman was the leading scorer for Pontotoc with 18 points.
“It feels good to be 6-0, but more importantly we’re 1-0 in the division,” Browning said. “It’s like I tell the boys, we want to win every game, but we also want to get better, and as long as we keep progressing, we’ll be in good shape at the end of the year.”
melissa.meador@journalinc.com