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Hard-luck Comets catch a break

South Boston News
Halifax County’s Evin Morrison battles for the ball in Friday’s varsity boys’ game action against Bassett. / December 10, 2012
The sometimes hard-luck Comets varsity boys’ basketball team caught a break Friday night, defeating Bassett on the road, 62-54.

Dakota Delaware came off the bench and led the Comets in scoring with 20 points. Tavion Petty added 18.

The Comets improved to 2-3. Bassett, seen by some observers to win the Piedmont, is winless this winter. The teams will be part of the new-look Piedmont district next season.

Comet coach Larry Epperly called this a good road win, after the Halifax squad had lost a heartbreaker in overtime to Martinsville on Wednesday. But the Comets face a daunting challenge Tuesday, when Person County comes to the HCHS gym.

HCHS enjoyed a quick start in the Bassett win, moving out to a 25-7 lead at the end of the first period.

HCHS led by 11 at the half, although Bassett had a strong third period and cut the lead to three at that point.

But HCHS was able to keep a working lead most of the way in the final period. There were two technicals at the end, one for basket interference by Bassett and one on a Comet player.

But HCHS prevailed, capitalizing on very good defense. Epperly frequently switched defenses and the Comet players kept Bassett off-stride.

Delaware also had a solid game on the board, snaring eight.

Halifax also had 14 steals, converting some to easy baskets. HCHS won despite some inconsistent shooting.

The Comets also won despite poor shooting. The Comets connected on 27 percent of their shots from the floor, eight percent overall from three-point range (Petty drained the lone 3) and 52 percent from the free throw line.

Here’s the bottom line for HCHS: good defense and rebounding won the game for the Comets, as Halifax was able to win on the road, always a positive for a basketball team.

Keyshawn Johnson had eight, while Trelanne Johnson added six. Halifax had a strong 21-point final period, sparked by ten points in that frame from Delaware.

TOUGH LOSS: A late missed opportunity, and the inability to contain Martinsville’s Paris Jamison proved costly Wednesday night in Comet boys’ varsity action at home.

The Bulldogs surged past the Comets, 68-63, in an overtime win in South Boston.

Halifax got out to a poor start, trailing 15-5 at the end of the first period.

The Bulldogs led, 24-20, at the half, and it was a competitive game throughout. Ultimately, Jamison, who poured in 39 points, proved unstoppable against the Comets. Jamison scored 14 points in the final period in regulation and overtime combined.

Jamison also proved to be a force on the glass, with at least ten offensive rebounds, as the Bulldogs defeated the Comet boys on their own floor.

HCHS also had problems with turnovers at inopportune times.

But the Comets had a shot at the win. HCHS had its chance to win but could not get a needed defensive stop. Keyshawn Johnson later hit an unlikely 3-pointer to send the game into OT, but the Comets got outscored, 13-8, in overtime.

Halifax had some defensive issues in OT, and Jamison created more trouble in the extra session for the Comets. Rebounding woes also hurt the Comets. Johnson had a terrific outing in the game, providing leadership for Halifax with 20 points, including nine in the fourth quarter and six in the OT sesson. Tavion Petty had a steady game and led HCHS with 21 points, including four treys.

Evin Morrison scored eight points and James Burden added six for the Comets.

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