Morton’s monster game not enough

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Despite a 44-point and

23-rebound explosion from Meadowview post John Robert Morton and several players fresh off the football field, Morgan coach David Walker’s Senators managed to hold off the Trojans 68-60 Monday night in the opening round of the Pepsi-Cola Marion Academy Thanksgiving Tournament.

Morton was deadly from the charity stripe and used his size advantage to get there often.

He hit 16-of-20-from the line in the game, but it wasn’t enough.

“That’s a career high for him,” Trojans’ coach Rick Raines said. “You couldn’t ask for a ball player to have a better inside game. If we just could have shot the ball more on the perimeter side and open it up a little bit, we could have done better.”

For Morgan, several players were still recovering from the Friday night state championship football game in Troy.

But Sunday they all showed up for practice and were ready to play on Monday.

Reid Buster led with 20 points and state title game stars Allen Callaway and Jeremy Smith had 14 points each.

“I think we did really well, I’m proud of these guys,” Walker said. “That’s the one thing I can say is I’ve got depth and I can keep running people at them.”

Eric Pilcher added 6 points and Ben Callaway had 5 for Morgan.

Blake Smith scored 5, Rett Rivers added 3 and Reid Tolar scored 2.

“It’s not that we shot well, we shot 42 times the first half and only had 30 points,” Walker said. “But we really got after the on defense.”

For the Trojans, Bryant Barnes had 6 points, Chris Sewell added 4 and Chris Henley and Noah Reid had 2 each.

Derek Lassitter and Dustin Lee had a point each.

“I couldn’t ask any more out of these boys,” Raines said. “We’re young and we’re still learning.”

Morton was unstoppable in the early going.

He scored all 12 of the Trojans’ points in the opening frame, but Morgan’s depth gave them the lead.

Smith, who made the title-game winning kick, stayed on his 3-point kick with two long bombs in the first quarter.

A. Callaway scored 6 points in the frame as well.

Morgan led 17-12 at the first break.

Morton dominated the second quarter as well.

He finished with 27 points in the first half, including 15 in the second frame.

His teammates finally got in on the act with five free throws.

Meadowview out-scored Morgan in the second quarter 20-18, but Morgan held onto a 35-32 lead at the midway point.

Morton’s teammates got in on the act in the third quarter as Sewell and Barnes got 4 each.

Reid added 2 points.

A. Callaway scored 8 points in the quarter to lead the Senators in the frame.

Buster added 6 in the quarter.

Morton made most of his hay at the line in the final quarter as he hit 7-of-8 from the line but it wasn’t enough as Morgan took the win.