Photo: Glencoe High’s Brandon Bishop (left) goes in for a layup as West End’s Nick Campbell (3) and Marcus Strickland (20) defend during the Yellow Jackets’ 73-48 win in the opening round of the Etowah County Schools boys basketball tournament on Monday (Jan. 15) at Hokes Bluff.
By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor
Glencoe shook off a poor shooting performance in the second quarter to win by double digits over West End, 73-48, in the opening round of the Etowah County Schools boys basketball tournament on Monday (Jan. 15) at Hokes Bluff.
The Yellow Jackets (7-14) looked to be in control after racing out to leads of 13-0 and 14-4 midway through the first quarter. The Patriots had no answer for Brandon Bishop in particular, as the senior forward went 5-for-5 from the field in scoring Glencoe’s first 11 points.
But West End battled back. Five points from Jeremiah Roberson helped the Walnut Grove squad draw within 19-11 after eight minutes.
Although Glencoe was dominating in rebounding, many of the resulting shots did not fall, and the Yellow Jackets scored just three from the field in the second period. West End took advantage of that offensive draught with a 15-5 run that trimmed the Jacket lead to three points with just under a minute to go in the first half.
Bishop knocked down a pair of foul shots in the final seconds to provide Glencoe with a 31-26 halftime advantage.
“We missed a lot of shots in the second quarter, and that lead never should have gotten back down to what it was,” said Glencoe head coach Jason Gilley. “We got back on track in the second half after we started to make those shots. We talked at halftime about getting back faster on defense, which is all about pure effort.”
The Yellow Jackets seemingly took Gilley’s words to heart. After a free throw from Marcus Strickland made it five-point game early in the third quarter, Glencoe reeled off a 23-6 run that featured 11 points from Cole McCarver and boosted the Yellow Jacket lead to 56-33 after 24 minutes.
The Patriots never again got within striking distance. Gilley cleared his bench during the fourth quarter on the way to Glencoe’s 25-point victory.
McCarver and Bishop finished with 19 and 18 points, respectively. Patrick Johnson added 10 points, while Bryan Benefield chipped in six.
Roberson paced West End with 17 points, followed by Gavin Knue with 13.
“We made a few mistakes here and there, but overall I thought the kids played hard and played well together,” said Gilley. “It was a good game for us to get a lot of people in.”
Glencoe will play Hokes Bluff on Thursday in the tournament semifinals. The tournament was moved up one day with the excepted inclement weather arriving Tuesday afternoon.