Vikings’ explosive third helps put away Ferriday

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 31, 2003

FERRIDAY, La. &045; By now everyone in Concordia Parish, District 3-2A and perhaps all of northeast Louisiana are convinced of what’s going on in Vidalia.

The Vikings’ inside-outside combination is pretty close to unstoppable.

It’s the post tandem of Louis McNulty and David Wilson that give teams so much problems, and opponents do just like Ferriday did Friday night &045; start in a zone, double down on the inside and scrap it against Vidalia’s outside game.

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Things worked so well the Vikings had four players in double figures &045; Wilson and McNulty combined for 33 points &045; en route to a 86-66 win over the Trojans.

&uot;We couldn’t match up with them inside,&uot; Ferriday head coach James Davis said. &uot;They’ve got probably two of the best inside guys in (Class) 2A. When they get the ball inside and do the things they do &045; we drop down and double them, and they kick it outside. The way they’re playing, it should be hard for anybody to stop them.&uot;

The win was the sixth straight for the Vikings, and the score this time around against neighboring Ferriday wasn’t as close as the first meeting three weeks ago. But it was the first time in three games the Vikings didn’t score 100, although running up 86 isn’t too shabby.

&uot;We said we wanted to score 100 points,&uot; said guard Tony Hawkins, who finished with a team-high 20 points. &uot;It seems like every time we play Ferriday they play us hard and hustle. We wanted to get it into our big men. They were kind of short inside. When (Tyrrence Taylor) got in foul trouble, that made them shorter.&uot;

The Trojans (10-13, 1-4) did their best to make a game of it at the end &045; even with Taylor sitting a good portion of the second half with four fouls. Ferriday knocked down five 3-pointers and converted two three-point plays in the fourth quarter and got the lead down to 13 halfway through.

Vidalia, however, had a cushion from the third quarter where it opened on a 16-1 run to get on the verge of taking a 30-point lead.

&uot;We got a little lax on defense,&uot; Vidalia head coach Robert Sanders said. &uot;That’s something we continue to work on. That’s been one of our weaknesses &045; on defense. Usually in the past we’ve had slow third quarters. We really try to make an effort to stay strong in the second half.&uot;

The third quarter was disaster for the Trojans, who lost Kris Cooke to five fouls just over two minutes in and had Taylor &045; their best matchup against Vidalia’s post men &045; with four fouls at the 2:57 mark.

Wilson and forward Ajay Warner scored 14 of the team’s 16 third quarter points, and Warner put in a layup off a steal with 3:15 left for a 55-31 lead. Wilson tossed in a bucket at the 1:11 mark to finish the run and put the lead at 61-35.

Ferriday got a 3-pointer from Scott Cage to go into the fourth quarter trailing 61-38.

&uot;That (going inside) was pretty much the plan,&uot; Sanders said. &uot;We knew they were in foul trouble and would have a little trouble on us there. We’re coming around at the right time with three district games left.&uot;

Outside of the height matchups, the Vikings worked Ferriday out of its zone defense early in the game and into a man-to-man setup. The Vikings used it to their advantage, starting the game on a 10-0 run with Hawkins scoring just before the halfway mark on a layup off of a steal.

A basket from McNulty at the 2:25 mark put the lead at 16-4, and Warner hit a 3-poniter 24 seconds later for a 19-7 lead.

&uot;This was our last time to play Ferriday,&uot; Wilson said. &uot;We wanted to blow them out, but it didn’t happen. We wanted to play good defense, do the best we could do and win the game. It (Ferriday’s man defense) did against us because we thought they would play box-and-one and guard Ajay.&uot;

The Trojans took a 23-10 lead into the second quarter and got a 3-pointer from Hawkins and a bucket from McNulty to put the lead at 28-10. The Trojans then took advantage of trips to the foul line to cut into the lead and got a 3-pointer from Reginald Carroll at the 4:17 mark to cut the lead to 31-21.

The Vikings fired back and posted a 45-34 lead at halftime.

&uot;We couldn’t afford to stay in a zone,&uot; Davis said. &uot;They were hitting the shots from the perimeter in the first quarter. I didn’t want to go man that early in the ball game. After that happened, we had no other choice but to run man-to-man on them.&uot;