By Mark Carpenter –
It was junior high boys basketball action on the hardwood at Peebles High School on Jan. 3 as the Indians welcomed the seventh and eighth grade teams from Manchester for the first of two meetings between the two schools this season. When the evening’s action came to a close, it was an even split for the fans of both sides with Peebles winning the seventh grade game 41-18, and Manchester taking the eighth grade tilt 50-32.
The seventh grade contest saw a high flying first quarter with the two sides combining for 26 points. The Indians got a three-point goal from Zane Porter and six points from Cory Reed, while the Hounds got six from Anthony Young and five from Aaron Lucas. Peebles led 14-12 after one, but that turned out to be the high point of the night for Manchester, as the Hounds only scored six points the rest of the game.
The Peebles “D” pitched a shutout in the second period and put up 11 points to lead 25-12 at the intermission. It was Porter getting hot in the third frame, firing in nine points as the Indians continued to expand their lead, now up to 40-14. The Indians only managed a single Tyler McDonald free throw in the final six minutes but they didn’t need any more than that as they ran away with the 41-18 win.
Coach Trent Arey’s Indians were led in scoring by two players in double figures, Porter with 14 and Reed with 11. Manchester was paced by Young’s 8 points and 7 from Lucas.
The Manchester eighth grade squad came into the game with just a single loss on their record, but the Indians gave them all they could handle, though the final score might not be indicative of that. It wasn’t until the fourth quarter that the Greyhounds could pull away and improve their record to 8-1 with the 50-32 triumph.
The two eighth grade offenses could not have begun the night much slower as the only points in the game’s first three minutes were two free throws by Manchester’s Luke Hayslip. The first Peebles basket came at the 2:15 mark from Chase Taylor and two baskets by Manchester’s Isaiah Scott put the Hounds up 6-2 at the end of the first period.
After the Hounds moved in front 10-2 early in the second quarter, a 6-0 Peebles run closed the gap to just two. Two buckets by Scott again put the Hounds up six but a three-pointer by Elijah Jones was part of a 5-0 Peebles spurt that made it 14-13. When Hayslip scored at the halftime horn, the visitors took a slim 16-13 lead into the break.
The two teams matched three-pointers to start the second half, Robert Tipton for Peebles and Hayslip for the Greyhounds, then repeated that performance later in the frame with Daulton McDonald connecting for Manchester and Taylor for the Indians. Tipton hit another trey late in the quarter and with just six minutes to play, the Greyhound lead stood at 28-23.
This eighth grade Manchester squad has a lot of weapons and a lot of talent and that came to the forefront in the fourth quarter as they began to pull away from the feisty Indians. McDonald hit another trey with 4:20 to play to extend the Hounds’ lead out to 37-25 and he also hit a couple of two-point shots later that kept the Greyhounds rolling. Peebles got a three from Jones but some solid play off the bench from Kaleb Wortman kept the Hounds comfortably in front. When Manchester’s Chandler Evans scored the game’s final bucket, the Hounds had their eighth win in nine outing, topping the Indians by that final count of 50-32.
The winners were led in scoring by McDonald, who had a huge game with 20 points. Joining him in double figures was Scott with 1, with Wortman adding 9 and Hayslip 7.
Peebles was topped by 10 points from Jones, 6 from Tipton, and 5 from Taylor.