Warriors’ rally falls short at Holiday Invitational
Isaiah Hicks kept Oxford Webb in the game in the first half and Mitron Terry carried the load for the Warriors in the second half, but it wasn’t enough as Raleigh Word of God held on for a 70-57 win in the semifinals of the Shavlik Randolph Bracket of the Holiday Invitational on Friday.
“We came in wanting to win it, but it didn’t go our way,” Hicks said.
Word of God threw a zone defense at Webb for most of the game, and the Warriors had difficulty getting into an offensive rhythm as Hicks and Terry did most of their damage in transition and on second-chance points.
Hicks scored 16 of his game-high 24 points in the first half, while Terry came on strong with 18 of his 21 points in the second half.
Webb coach Leo Brunelli said his team was a little hesitant at times attacking the Word of God defenses, which he found a bit puzzling.
“It was one of those situations where we couldn’t get a good flow going,” Brunelli said. “It wasn’t what we were used to, but I’m proud of the way we ground it out and made sure we competed. I think we did a little better job in the second half.”
Webb fell behind quickly 6-0 before Hicks finally cracked the scoring column with a shot in the lane with 4:54 left in the first. He had seven points in the period as Webb fell behind 18-9.
Despite going 0-of-8 from behind the arc in the first half, Webb only trailed 30-27 at the break.
But coming out of the locker room, Webb didn’t have an answer for Word of God guard Jordan Whitfield, who scored the Rams’ first nine points of the third quarter. Whitfield finished with 17 points, including three 3-pointers, as his play prevented Webb from getting back into the game.
“Coach (Quinton Jackson) told me to play aggressive, and I got some easy open looks,” Whitfield said.
When Whitfield scored on a break to give Word of God a 10-point cushion at 37-27, it established a margin that Webb couldn’t overcome. The Warriors cut the lead to under five points twice but got no closer.
Tyrek Beverly hit a 3-pointer from the left baseline to make the score 43-40 with 2:20 left in the third period and Hicks made a pair of free throws to make the score 54-50 midway through the fourth quarter before Word of God stretched out the lead to end the game.
The Warriors will play again today at 2:20 p.m. in the third-place game against High Point Christian at Broughton High School.
Word of God 70, Webb 57
RALEIGH WORD OF GOD — Newkirk 12, Brownridge 4, J. Whitfield 17, Moore 3, Scott 2, S. Whitfield 8, Coger 23, Nobles 1.
OXFORD WEBB — Tyrek Beverly 7, Isaiah Hicks 24, Mitron Terry 21, Stefan Cates 2, Tre Wilkerson 1, Bryan Smith 2.
Word of God|18|12|17|23—70
3-Point goals—Word of God 4 (J. Whitfield 3, Moore). Oxford Webb 2 (Beverly, Terry). Rebounds—Word of God 40 (Coger 9, S. Whitfield 9). Oxford Webb 43 (Terry 13). Assists—Word of God 12 (S. Whitfield 4). Oxford Webb 8 (Terry 3, Devonte Williams 3).
Records—Word of God 9-1, Webb 10-2.