By David Wheeler
Special to the Journal
BOONEVILLE – Biggersville Lions head coach Cliff Little reported he did not say much at halftime.
Those few words must have had an impact.
The defending Class 1A state champions broke open a close contest with multiple third-quarter runs, running past the Booneville Blue Devils 92-76 Tuesday night.
“I said very little and we didn’t change anything at the half,” Little said. “They just decided to play in the second half.”
In a nice November pairing of competitive programs, the contest was close for the first 16 minutes.
Including a pair of baskets by Jaylon Gaines, Biggersville (5-0) sprinted to an 11-0 run early in the first period for an 11-4 lead. But Booneville (4-2) would not be pushed around, closing the quarter on an 11-2 run with Joseph Caver hitting a pair of field goals that helped pull the Devils within 22-21.
A 3-pointer by Caver lifted the Devils to an early 26-22 margin in the second quarter. But the contest stayed close, and Biggersville led 42-41 at the half.
“I thought they turned up the intensity, thought they played more physical, and we didn’t handle it well,” Booneville head coach Michael Smith said. “I’m proud of them not backing down.”
Back-to-back baskets by Emanual Simmons and Daniel Simmons in the opening seconds of the third quarter helped to push the Biggersville lead to 51-41, and Booneville never could recover.
The Lions went on to lead 68-55 after three periods.
“Our pressure ended up wearing them down,” Little said. “Last year is long gone, and we just can’t step on the floor.”
Daniel Simmons led five Lions in double figures with 23 points, with Caver scoring 28 to lead the Devils.
Biggersville will be in action Friday in the Lighthouse Classic in Corinth against Tupelo.
(G) Booneville 62, Biggersville 32: A 20-7 third quarter helped the Lady Devils take control.
Deshiyah Agnew bagged 14 for Booneville (5-1), with Jada Tubbs scoring 10 for Biggersville.