Dallas County tops Southside in first meeting of ranked rivals

Published 11:59 pm Thursday, December 13, 2012

The No. 2 Dallas County Hornets seized the momentum to close the first half and controlled the pace of the game to defeat the rival No. 2 Southside Panthers 57-45 on Thursday in non-region play.

Willie Moore, head boys basketball coach of Dallas County (9-2, 4-0 No. 2 Class 4A), said his team played a good game and focused heavily on neutralizing Southside’s shooters.

“I thought we played fair, but we can play a lot better,” Moore said. “Southside’s a really good team with really good shooters and a good coach. We worked really hard on trying to stay on top of those ball screens they were trying to set for No. 1 [Sammarkus Jones].”

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The score was tied 15-15 going into the second quarter, but the Hornets took control in the quarter.

Markell Harris scored the quarter’s first basket on a layup to give Dallas County a 17-15 lead with 6:19 left in the half.

The Hornets scored again, as Chad Martin finished off a fast break with an easy layup that made it 19-15 with 5:52 left.

Southside (9-2, 1-0 No. 2 Class 3A) answered back when Octavius Gulley scored under the basket, but Harris countered with a 3-pointer that pushed the Hornets’ lead to 22-17 with 5:25 left.

Jeffery Mack hit one of two from the line to make the score 22-18, but Jerrod Moorer scored on a back-door layup to make it 24-18 with 3:39 left.

De’Vonte Alexander scored in the paint for Southside to make it 24-20, but Moorer hit a 3-pointer to make it 27-20 with 2:24 left in the half.

Mack hit a mid-range shot to bring the Panthers closer at 27-22, but Harris and Keyonis Phillips scored baskets to close the half for the Hornets and send them into the locker room leading 31-22.

Dallas County controlled the third quarter as they went up twice by double digits in the period and the Panthers couldn’t get their shots to fall.

Southside got the score down to 49-43 with 6:40 left in the fourth, but Phillips and Martin each hit a pair of free throws and Harris scored on back-to-back possessions to put the game out of reach at 57-43 with 1:38 left.

Cedric Brown, head boys basketball coach of Southside, said his team just went cold down the stretch.

“We really couldn’t hit a basket. No disrespect to Dallas County, they played a wonderful game and their game plan was excellent, but late down the stretch we expected shots to fall and they kind of rimmed out on us,” Brown said. “But that happens in a game like this, a rivalry game. The good part about this game versus last year’s game against Dallas County is that it’s no longer an area game. But like I told the guys, how can you win if you haven’t felt defeat.”

Harris and Moorer each had 15 points for Dallas County, while Martin had 13 points.

Mack led Southside with 13 points, while Jones had 11 points for the Panthers.