Published: 12:00 AM, Thu Feb 23, 2012
Hoke boys use zone defense to stifle Seventy-First 76-53
RAEFORD - Not many coaches would give their teams something brand new to try in the second round of the playoffs.
But Hoke County's Quame Patterson thought a new tactic was just the thing when his Bucks hosted Seventy-First on Wednesday night.
"Seventy-First is so big that I we needed to try something different," Patterson said. "We haven't played zone all year. If they were going to beat us, it was going to have to be with the 3."
The Bucks' tight zone defense neutralized the Falcons' size and gave Hoke an opportunity to get ahead early en route to a 76-53 victory.
Bucks to host Apex
The Bucks (23-2) will host Apex in the final round of the NCHSAA 4-A sectionals Friday night. Apex already eliminated one Cape Fear region team when it beat Jack Britt in Monday's opening round.
Hoke County's strategy was effective from the start, helping the Bucks to get out to a 15-7 lead five minutes into the game.
That lead dwindled to 16-13 at the end of the first quarter when Falcons' guard Sidney Knox was fouled on a last-second attempt from well beyond the arc and made all three free throws.
But the Bucks surged in the second quarter, outscoring the Falcons 23-9. Tarique Thompson scored six in the quarter, part of a game-high 26 points for the junior.
"We were moving the ball around well and getting good, open looks," Thompson said. "And then we were able to stop them on defense, so we executed pretty well."
The Bucks shot twice from the top of the lane and once from 3-point range without any opposition - all resulting in scores - while the Falcons remained stationary.
71st defense blamed
"We just didn't rotate the way we needed to on defense, and it was fairly obvious," Seventy-First coach David Simmons said. "They were able to make shots and take full advantage of it."
The Bucks led 39-22 at the half.
The Falcons (19-9) were led on offense by forward Dominic Page, who finished with 14 points after scoring nine in the third quarter.
But neither Page's late scoring push nor the effort of guard Marcus Williams, who made a trio of 3-pointers in the fourth, were enough to challenge Hoke as the Bucks held the lead easily through the final minutes of the game.
Hoke County 76, Seventy-First 53
SEVENTY-FIRST-Sidney Knox 11, Swaid 8, Vince 4, Marcus Williams 12, Dominic Page 14, Thomas 3, Bennett.
HOKE COUNTY- Harris 5, McKoy, Wright 2, Parker 9, Blue 7, Tarique Thompson 26, Kimane Freeman 12, Platt 6, Book 8.
Fouled out: SF - Williams.
Technical fouls: None
3-point goals: SF - Knox, Williams 4. HC - Parker, Freeman 3.
Records: Hoke County 23-2.