PAC-6 BOYS' QUARTERS: Hillside, Person advance to semis
Hillside survived a fourth-quarter rally to beat the East Chapel Hill boys 68-59 in the quarterfinals of the PAC-6 4-A Tournament at Roxboro’s Person High School Tuesday night.
Robert Robinson Jr., led the No. 3-seeded Hornets with 22 points and was 9 of 10 from the line in the final quarter. Hillside (15-10) got the win and a matchup with No. 2 seed Jordan here Thursday at 7:30 p.m.
In the nightcap of Tuesday’s quarterfinal round, homestanding Person upended No. 4 seed Riverside 75-72
No. 5 seed Person will meet No. 1 seed Northern in the other semifinal here Thursday at 6 p.m.
Hillside coach Crasten Davis said East Chapel Hill was a much better team than its 9-15 record indicated.
“They were a good team but at this stage all we want to do is move forward and fight to play another day,” Davis said. “It’s difficult to beat a team two times, especially three times. They came out and knocked down their shots to stay in the game.
The game was tight throughout the first half. The first quarter ended in a 13-13 tie and at halftime Hillside managed to lead 29-28.
But in the third quarter, Hillside took control and quickly built a double-digit lead. The Hornets’ biggest lead of the game was 16 points late in the third quarter when Jarrod France made a 3 for his only points of the game to make it 55-39.
Hillside finished with six 3s in the game, two apiece from Robinson and Justice Kithcart and the other one Trevion Thompson.
East Chapel Hill, the No. 6 seed, was able to chip away at Hillside’s lead in the fourth quarter, though. The Wildcats fought back and cut the lead to 62-57 with 1:13 left.
From there, Hillside was able to make enough free throws — 6 of 8 — to secure the win.
East Chapel Hill was not able to execute on the offensive end during that stretch and could not take advantage of the two Hillside misses.
East Chapel Hill coach Ray Hartsfield said Tuesday’s game turned out like so many others during the season — his team played tough but couldn’t quite get over the hump.
“We kept chipping away and chipping away,” Hartsfield said. “We had nothing to lose. We played everybody tough and battled them good. We were 2-8 and could have easily been 8-2 (in PAC-6 play). We just weren’t able to finish games off.”
Hillside got 17 points from Thompson and 16 from Kithcart.
Thompson said he expected another tough game from East Chapel Hill despite the Hornets sweeping the two regular-season matchups.
“We just wanted to come play our game and move forward,” Thompson said. “It’s tough beating a team twice and three times just makes it even better.”
Lawyer Dallas led East Chapel Hill with 17 points while Robert Wilson added 16.
PERSON TOPS RIVERSIDE
In the nightcap, Antwon Smith hit a layup with 23 seconds left to give Person its only lead of the second half and then he hit a pair of free throws to extend the Rockets’ lead to its final winning margin of 75-72 over Riverside in the first round of the boys’ PAC-6 tournament.
“We just worked hard as a team,” said Smith, who finished with 14 points. “We’ve done it all year. Tré (Tapp) dished the ball off to me and I was able to finish. It was a big win for us.”
Person coach Charlie Dacus said he thought his team played pretty well the whole game even though they trailed much of the second half.
“We battled and played 32 minutes,” Dacus said. “Even though we were down, I felt we were playing pretty well. We kept playing hard and gave ourselves a chance to win it at the end.”
Riverside had a chance to retake the lead but Joey Cabrera’s driving shot was blocked on the way up and he was forced to Smith before time expired. After Smith made his free throws, the Pirates’ final desperation play failed as their inbounds pass sailed out of bounds.
The Rockets used a tenacious press defense that Riverside was unable to solve in the second half. Riverside held a 41-33 halftime lead and the Pirates were up 57-50 going into the fourth quarter.
But Person was able to rally from down 70-65 in the final 2:03 thanks to four made free throws by Tapp, who led the Rockets with 22 points, and a three-point play by Ebon Jay to make it 72-71.
Person then forced a Riverside turnover that set up the winning possession for the Rockets.
Cabrera and Dexter McCrea each scored 14 points to lead Riverside.
The Pirates (2-13) finished with eight 3s in the game, including four by McCrea and a pair by Cabrera.
Riverside coach Brian Strickland said it was a tough way to lose but he was proud of the way his team battled.
“Anytime you come up here and play Person at their place, it is a tough place to play,” Strickland said. “Tonight it didn’t prove to be any different. It was a game of runs and unfortunately, they made their final run at the end and we couldn’t score on that last possession.”
HILLSIDE 68, EAST CHAPEL HILL 59
East Chapel Hill 13 15 14 17 — 59
Hillside 13 16 26 13 — 68
EAST CHAPEL HILL — Kyle Chavis 2, Arkavius Parks 10, Tykeem Woodard 2, Carter Collins 8, Quincy McDuffie 2, Duncan Hemminger 2, Robert Wilson 16, Lawyer Dallas 17.
HILLSIDE — Lashone McCrea 3, Robert Robinson Jr. 22, Justice Kithcart 16, Trevion Thompson 17, Jalen McGee 1, Jarrod France 3, Timothy Mangum 4, Oderan Udemadu 2.
3-point goals—East Chapel Hill 4 (Parks 2, Collins 2), Hillside 6 (Robinson 2, Kithcart 2, Thompson, France). Rebounds—East Chapel Hill 26 (Wilson 6). Assists—East Chapel Hill 11 (Collins 3).
Records — East Chapel Hill 9-15; Hillside 15-10.
ROXBORO PERSON 75, RIVERSIDE 72
Person 16 17 17 25 — 75
Riverside 11 30 16 14 — 72
PERSON — Rashi Richmond 8, Marquis Torain 17, Tré Tapp 22, Derrick Bass 4, Antwon Smith 14, Ebon Jay 6, Jeremy Smith 4.
RIVERSIDE — Justin Johson 11, C.J. Carpenter 9, Joey Cabrera 14, Eric Peaks 2, Dexter McCrea 14, Terrence Suitt 7, Torren Wynn 4, Markiese Crutchfield 11.
3-point goals—Person 2 (Torain 2), Riverside 8 (Johnson, Carpenter, Cabrera 2, McCrea 4).
Records—Person 13-11, Riverside 12-13.