Bulldogs hold off Warriors
The Trinity boys adjusted well and finally found their shot in the second half Tuesday against rival Wheatmore.
The Bulldogs focused more on getting into transition for easy baskets and hit several key shots from inside and outside in beating the visiting Warriors 58-47 for a hard-earned regular-season sweep.
“Every time we play them it’s always going to be this way,” Trinity coach Tim Kelly said. “Ever since Wheatmore’s opened, every game’s been real physical, real intense. Both teams played really, really hard. It usually comes down to which team makes the least mistakes.”
Daniel Newcomer scored 27 points – 21 of which came in the second half, including 13 straight in the third quarter. Hunter Osborne added 10 points – eight of which came in the second half, including several timely baskets – to lead the Bulldogs (19-0, 6-0 PAC-6 2A).
Trailing by six at halftime, 21-15, Trinity scored 15 straight points to lead by nine with 3:00 left in the third. Newcomer scored on five straight possessions, hitting three 3-pointers and scoring in transition twice, to help put the Bulldogs up 30-21.
“It felt great,” Newcomer said. “My teammates got me the ball, and I got some shots to fall after hardly hitting any in the first half. So, they were open shots, so I was able to have a lot of confidence. Once I got one, they kept coming to me, I was open, and I kept hitting them.”
The Warriors trimmed it to 32-30 heading to the fourth and finally tied it, 38-38, with 5:41 left. But Trinity answered with eight straight points, again getting two key baskets from Newcomer and one from Osborne, to lead 46-38 with 3:05 left.
Wheatmore again got within three with 1:04 left but couldn’t pull closer.
“If these two schools don’t get together and start selling tickets for $15 – my gosh,” Warriors coach David Spell said with a laugh. “I’d pay $15 to watch this game. They made some plays at the end and we didn’t. But I hope our team doesn’t let this game dictate our season.”
Marshall Lange shot well throughout the game for Wheatmore (12-8, 3-3), hitting eight 3s – a few from very deep – en route to a game-high 35-points. His biggest spurt of scores on five of six possessions in the second quarter gave the Warriors a 21-13 lead just before halftime.
But Wheatmore didn’t quite connect as well on shots in the second half, which, in turn, the Bulldogs turned into their transition offense and gained the advantage with third- and fourth-quarter runs.
“We missed shots that allowed them (to get into transition),” Spell said. “We had some very good looks, unbelievable looks. One thing we have to guard against is we give Marshall a lot of latitude offensively. And we have to understand that when he goes, someone has to rotate back.”
Both teams play again Wednesday at home, with Trinity playing Southwestern Randolph while Wheatmore hosts Eastern Randolph.