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Comets get senior night win

South Boston News
Comet guard Tyrrell Carden powers up between a group of Tunstall defenders in Friday action. / February 05, 2018

After struggling much of the regular season, the Halifax County High School varsity boys’ basketball team suddenly finds itself trending in a positive direction heading into the postseason.

Halifax improved to 9-12, but has won three of its last five after Friday’s Senior Night rout of Tunstall at home, 65-42.

The Comets started five seniors to recognize their contributions to the program. Halifax bolted to a 30-18 first half lead and got three-point energy from senior Tyrell Carden, who drained five treys by intermission.

Carden had 17 at the break and finished with 21.

David Medley had a strong second half and contributed 14, including one three. Dashon Louden, another senior, had nine.

Halifax had this contest firmly under control and the players clearly enjoyed themselves. Now, Halifax has to wait until Friday for the start of the Piedmont District tournament.

Beyond that, Halifax has at least one game guaranteed in 5A north sub-regional action.

All of the seniors were on the court for the first part of the opening quarter, and the members of the class paved the way for the win.

“They came out very energetic, fired up, they were excited about Senior night,” said coach Sterling Williams. “They came out with a lot of energy, a lot of effort. They were talking on defense and able to get some scoring on offense.”

Halifax played well defensively, too, and Williams believes this team has an extra boost of momentum heading into the postseason.

Williams knew it would take a while for the Comets to jell, and figure out the higher-paced varsity game.

“Right now, we’re hitting our stride,” said Williams with good basketball on both ends of the court.

“We’ve got good momentum,” said the Comet coach, adding that a good team win like Tunstall will boost the squad’s energy. Even in the Park View loss, Halifax played well, and the Comets had a good effort in Wednesday’s loss at Martinsville. It’s now about executing down the stretch, finishing the ballgame and being consistent,” said Williams.

Williams and the Comets have at least two games and possibly three, in the Piedmont District tournament. Beyond that, Halifax also has one game coming on Feb. 19 in sub-regional action.

Halifax blew this Senior night game open in the third period, with the Comets showing excellent athleticism.

Medley had a couple of strong stick backs on the offensive glass and Carden drained a 3-pointer for a 39-25 Comet lead. Otis Slayton delivered a well-executed steal and Louden made a decisive drive to the hoop for a 41-25 Comet advantage.

By the end of the third, Halifax led 48-29.

Slayton finished with five points and J’Quan Davis added four. Carden, excited to celebrate the Senior night finale, said, “it was great to see all of the seniors playing on the court.

“I’ve got a lot of confidence going into the tournament,” he added. Earlier in the week, Halifax had its third game in three days. The Comets had a good effort, but Martinsville prevailed at home, 42-38.

Martinsville played without its senior point guard, T.J. Pettaway.

Williams said Halifax had costly key turnovers down the stretch, and Martinsville capitalized. Halifax was also short-handed, with five players out with the flu.

Martinsville had a 15-9 run in the second period and led 23-13 at the half. Halifax rallied a bit in the third period, but the Bulldogs held on for the home win.

Tyree Dunkley and Medley had eight points and MyQuan Williams seven. Mike Spraggins scored six and Carden added five.

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