Posted: Friday, February 26th 2010 at 9:02pm
Boys playoffs: Trojans rout Central, Carroll
By Jeff Hart Staff
MURRAYVILLE – For North Hall coach Benjie Wood, there is no place like home.
The Trojans used two big first half runs and forced 11 first half turnovers en route to a 70-42 win over Central-Carroll Friday night in the first round of the Class AAA state tournament at the North Hall gym.
“We love playing at home,” Wood said. “The students and the crowd really get us going. We can’t say enough about our fans and how much they mean to us.”
North Hall (25-3) next will play host to Franklin County on Tuesday in the second round. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the North Hall gym.
The home-court atmosphere, however, was a burden early on for the Trojans. They trailed 10-6 after two Central breakout layups following North Hall misses, prompting Wood to call a timeout.
“We were a little too jacked up,” he said. “I just told them to settle down and play.”
They took it to heart and then proceeded to play a near-flawless rest of the first quarter. North Hall did not commit a single turnover in the quarter and used a 12-0 run to pull away for a 24-16 lead heading into the second quarter. The Trojans would never trail again.
In the second quarter, the Trojans would build a 31-16 lead on a 7-0 run. Central would claw back behind Patrick Gamble, who pulled down eight first half rebounds, including a put back on a missed free throw to pull the Lions to within 37-27. But North Hall closed out the first half with a 7-0 run for a 44-27 halftime lead and the rout was on.
“I don’t know if it was our most complete game but I thought we did a good job overall defensively,” Wood said. “We rebounded well and shot the ball pretty well, except for layups. We are still missing too many of those.”
North Hall made sure there would be no comebacks in the second half using a 13-0 run over the first five minutes for a 57-27 lead to put the game away. Central had as many turnovers in the third quarter (7) as points (7) while North Hall shot more than 50 percent from the field and committed just three turnovers.
The Trojans forced 24 Central turnovers for the game while committing just six of their own. After getting outrebounded 14-5 early in the game, they outrebounded the taller Lions 14-6 the rest of the way.
While Chris Barnes carried the scoring load for the Trojans with 15 points on five 3-pointers, Lance White steered the offense with six assists and added six rebounds to go with three points. Robby Hill finished with 11 points and six rebounds and Chase Syfan and Trevor Ross had eight points each for North Hall.
Anthony Rounds led Central (9-19) with 10 points, but was held to just two in the second half. Gamble finished with nine points and 12 rebounds for the Lions.
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