By Bobby Mathews, Sports Editor
SPRINGVILLE — The Springville Tigers were just too much for the Moody Blue Devils here on Tuesday night, November 30, winning 48-36.
Despite a slow start that saw the Tigers jump out to a 28-11 lead late in the first half, the Blue Devils had their chances. Caden Helms scored a three-pointer at the halftime buzzer to cut the lead to 28-14, and with 2:06 left in the third period, he cut the lead to 7 with another 3 pointer and free-throw on a four-point play.
Sensing their opponents’ momentum, the Tigers scored back-to-back buckets to push the lead back to 11, 36-25, to open the fourth frame.
“We were just trying to play hard defensively first of all,” said Tigers head coach Jeremy Monceaux. “I preach defense — I’m a defensive-minded guy. They got to the end of the half where they had 11 points and they banged home a nearly half-court shot to make it 14 points. We dominated at the defensive end of the floor. We played better on offense probably than the scoreboard shows as far as point production, but we turned the ball over too much and missed some easy ones around the rim. But our defense is the reason we were able to get the win..”
The Blue Devils were never able to get comfortable in their halfcourt offense.
“Springville plays really good man defense so we’ve got to work on some of our offensive sets,” Moody head coach Chad Bates said. “We didn’t really execute down low. They’ve got a really good post player and he took it to us tonight. We’ve got to figure out defensively how to combat that. They do some kind of peculiar things on defense and they really take away the middle. That threw the guys off and we really didn’t get in sync. We’ll go back and watch the film and get those mistakes corrected.”
The Tigers were able to extend their lead to 45-27 with 3:04 left in the game, until Moody’s Davion Dozier was fouled on a drive to the basket and made both free throws to cut the lead to 45-29.
After Springville hit a three-pointer to push the score to 48-29, Morgan Pinkney drove the lane with a scoop layup that fell in off the glass and converted a free-throw for the old-fashioned three-point play.
It wasn’t enough.
Derek Moore poured in 15 points and Amari Cowan had 7, while Johnnie Wolf and Collin Lockhart each had five for the Tigers.
Springville improves to 5-2 on the season, while Moody falls to 6-4 overall. The Tigers play again on December 2, when they face St. Clair County. Moody plays next on December 7 when they play Alexandria.