Morgan pulls away in crunch time to beat rival MCS

Published 10:02 pm Saturday, January 5, 2013

Morgan's Dalton Lee (10) and Meadowview's Dylan Lawrence battle for position during Saturday's game at Meadowview. -- Robert Hudson

It was a game of lead changes, but the Morgan Academy Senators pulled away in the third quarter on their way to a 61-52 win over the Meadowview Christian Trojans on Saturday.

Bob Taylor, head boys basketball coach of Morgan Academy (13-3), said the Senators did a good job crashing the boards and getting out in transition.

“I think our defense and rebounding were key. We got the tempo up a little bit and we played a little bit better, a little bit faster,” Taylor said. “We had some breakaways on some rebounds and got the ball out and got up the floor. That kind of separated us from them a little bit. It was a good win for us against a good, quality basketball team.”

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Meadowview coach James Murphy said his team got some good looks, but just couldn’t get the shots to fall.

“We got some looks that we wanted, we just couldn’t capitalize on them,” Murphy said. “We didn’t make the baskets we wanted and that gave them an opportunity to win. We should have won, but the ball didn’t bounce our way tonight.”

The Senators held a slim 27-26 lead coming out of halftime, but Meadowview Christian (7-6) captured the momentum early in the third, as Dylan Lawrence scored on a runner and then scored on a fast-break layup and hit the free throw after being fouled while shooting, giving the Trojans a 31-27 lead.

But Morgan’s Connor Henderson hit a free throw and Ford Manderson scored on a layup and hit a 3-pointer to give the Senators a 33-31 lead with 4:28 left in the third.

That shift in momentum was a part of a 14-0 run for Morgan that also included baskets by Dalton Lee and Porter Rivers that helped make it a 41-31 lead with 2:08 left in the third.

Lawrence stopped the run with a turnaround jumper, but Lee scored on a fast break and Manderson hit a buzzer-beating shot in the lane to keep the Senators ahead 45-33 going into the fourth quarter.

Lawrence scored the first five points of the fourth quarter to cut the Morgan lead to 45-38, but the Senators responded by going on a 6-0 run.

Meadowview got within single digits twice down the stretch, but Morgan held off the comeback.

Lee had 18 points and 17 rebounds for Morgan, while Manderson had 17 points, and Henderson had 12 points and 10 rebounds.

Lawrence led all scorers with 32 points, while Travis Stacey had 14 points for Meadowview.

Meadowview will take the court again on Tuesday at home against Sparta starting at 4 p.m.

Morgan will return to the floor again on Monday, as they’ll play against Fort Dale Academy with games starting at 4 p.m.