Not wanting a repeat of their first meeting where a fourth-quarter lead slipped away, the WCHS Pioneers took Stone Memorial to task Tuesday night, finishing the game strong with a 59-51 victory.
“I’m very pleased in how our guys played last night. Defensively our team did what was asked of them and offensively we were very efficient with our shot selection,” said Warren County head coach Chris Sullens. “It’s good to get a district win on our home floor, and now we prepare for senior night by honoring those who have made huge contributions in helping this program make tremendous strides in the last three years. These seniors have stuck with the process and have never quit, no matter what the situation.”
It was the tale of two scorers Tuesday night as Pioneer junior Isaiah Grayson hit for his 1,001 career point with 1:24 left in the third. Grayson beat some pressing defense by slipping away from double coverage to hit the underneath bucket and would go on to score 18 points total.
The second tale’s protagonist was Pioneer Chance Hobbs. Hobbs hit a game-high 27 points, tickling the twine from long distance for 5 treys, and going a perfect 6-of-6 from the charity stripe. Hobbs finished strong as he scored 12 points in the fourth quarter – 6 points from the line and two treys – which kept the wolves, or Panthers in this case, at bay from a potentially damaging fourth-quarter comeback.
Warren County started to pull away from the Panthers at the half with a 25-19 lead and continued its drive through the third quarter leading 40-28 after three. That’s when Stone Memorial – hitting 11-of-14 for 79 percent from the line – pulled out all the stops.
Also helping the Pioneer team finish out the game by adding points to the total were Sloan Seymour with 5 points, Caleb Newby and K’Rojhn Calbert each scored 3 points, Irving Espinoza 2 and Isaac Golden hit for 1 point.
Leading the scorecard for Stone Memorial was Tristan Norman with 23 points.
“They now have opportunity to finish season with 15 regular-season wins, the most in the past 15-plus years in this program, eclipsing last year’s mark,” said Sullens. “I am extremely proud of each of them. We also know how important the next 7-10 days are for our basketball team with tournament play starting late next week.”
Although school is canceled Friday, the Pioneers will still play the scheduled home game against DeKalb County as they celebrate senior night. Games begin at 6 p.m.