Ferriday boys turn in well-rounded performance for win

Published 12:03 am Thursday, December 31, 2015

Ferriday’s Jayshon Foster and Marquell Griffin defend the backboard against Vidalia Wednesday in the Trojans’ 66-44 victory. (Tim Givens / The Natchez Democrat)

Ferriday’s Jayshon Foster and Marquell Griffin defend the backboard against Vidalia Wednesday in the Trojans’ 66-44 victory. (Tim Givens / The Natchez Democrat)

SICILY ISLAND — Ferriday head coach K.G. Watkins had been patiently waiting for that one game where everything came together.

He got that game from his team Wednesday afternoon in a 66-44 win against Vidalia in the Sicily Island tournament.

Watkins said it started with taking some pressure off of a position the Trojans have been weak at — guard.

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“I’ve been waiting on the guards to play a bit better, and we tried to take some of the pressure off of them today by opening up our offense,” Watkins said. “We widened out a bit and that seemed to help.”

Shots were also falling for the Ferriday guards as Ronald Davis recorded 13 points and Carlos Collins added nine.

It was big man Dantrieze Scott, however, who stole the show.

“They had to understand that they have to go out and take a win,” Watkins said. “The last two days hurt his feelings I think, so he played a little bit harder today.”

Scott was hurting opponent’s feelings all afternoon, racking up rebounds and blocking multiple shots.

He also had a game-high 16 points.

On the flip side for Vidalia, head coach Robert Sanders was disappointed to see the game get as out of reach as it did.

“Our guys became frustrated and things went awry from there,” Sanders said. “We can play better than we did, especially in the second half.”

Demarco Brown was the leading scorer for Vidalia with 11 points and teammate Julius Wilson, who is still getting acclimated following an injury that had him on the sidelines for most of the season thus far, added nine.

The teams were tight after the first half, with Ferriday holding a slight edge at the break, 31-24.

The Trojans exploded for a huge 23 point fourth quarter to put the game away.

Vidalia (girls) 62, Ferriday 57

SICILY ISLAND — After trailing by as many as 15 in the third quarter, the Ferriday Lady Trojans were able to close the gap with the Vidalia Lady Vikings to just three with under two minutes to play.

Missed opportunities doomed Ferriday, however, as Vidalia escaped with a 62-57 win in the Sicily Island tournament.

“Holiday blues,” Ferriday head coach Lisa Abron said. “Happens to us every year. I don’t know what the deal is. But, they gave a good effort towards the end, so I give them credit for that.”

Vidalia jumped out to an early lead in the first quarter, and was able to build on it in the second to take a 31-20 lead into halftime.

Jalyn Smith, who led all-scorers with 23 points, had 11 first-half points for the Lady Vikings, and Taylor Wilson sunk three three-point shots to push Vidalia ahead.

But on the back of Anasia Turner, the Lady Trojans fought back.

Turner scored 10 points in the third quarter and added another three in the fourth. She finished the game with a team-high 18.

“She has a lot of heart and passion for the game,” Abron said. “That is nothing unusual for her.”

What was unusual, though, was the amount of free throws that weren’t falling for the Lady Trojans.

“That hurt us tremendously,” Abron said. “At the half, we had already missed about 10, and we didn’t do a very good job in the second half either knocking some of those down. That probably would have made a big difference.”

Ferriday missed a total of 19 free throws in the contest.

Abron said she and her team are keeping their heads up, however, because district play is right around the corner.

“We still have non-district games against Block and Natchez, so hopefully in those two we can recuperate and get ready for district,” she said.