By Erik Harris
PINSON – Making the transition into Class 6A, Area 12 play didn’t seem to help Pinson Valley’s cause Tuesday night.
The Indians limped into area play with a 1-8 record and Center Point didn’t make things any easier on Pinson Valley head coach Clint Argo, coming into Mike Dutton Gymnasium and taking a 68-51 win.
With only three teams residing in Area 12 this season, there’s little room for error in league matchups. The Indians will take an 0-1 mark into their next area clash, which is next Tuesday night at Clay-Chalkville.
Pinson Valley point guard Donevan Waldrop had a strong offensive outing, going 7-of-15 from the field for 18 points. He made all but one of his second-quarter attempts and helped the home team cut through a 10-point deficit early in the frame.
“They were playing a little tight, beat my man and it was either pull another defender or sag off, Waldrop said. “I finished.”
Cornell Hale provided assistance from the paint. Hale made 44 percent of his shots for 12 points, but struggled against the Eagles on the boards.
Second chance opportunities hindered the Indians all night. Center Point forward Darrius Curry pulled down 10 rebounds, finishing the game with a double-double. He scored 14 points, all from the inside.
“We just didn’t box out good enough and we didn’t have team rebounding,” Waldrop said.
Point man Dedric Foreman opened up scoring opportunities for himself and his teammates all night. Foreman got the Eagles out in transition, which is where they did much of their damage. He finished with 22 points, eight rebounds and five assists.
Pinson Valley trailed by only two at the break, but a cold offensive start to the third allowed the visitors to pull away.
Argo saw his guys miss seven of their first eight second-half shots, but rallied to pull to within five going into the fourth quarter. That’s as close as they would get.
Center Point’s Jaylon Eatmon buried a baseline 3-pointer that extended the lead to eight with 4:16 remaining, and it only grew from there.
Jaylon Jordan added 13 points and four assists for the visitors.
The Indians return to their home floor Friday night against Huffman.
“We just have to get better, we can’t get any worse,” Waldrop said.