Hornets honor seniors; blow out Marengo County

Published 11:51 pm Thursday, January 29, 2015

Dallas County’s Kendell Motley looks for an open teammate during the Hornets blowout victory over Marengo County Thursday.--Daniel Evans

Dallas County’s Kendell Motley looks for an open teammate during the Hornets blowout victory over Marengo County Thursday.–Daniel Evans

PLANTERSVILLE — Before the boys game Thursday, Dallas County High School held a ceremony to thank its senior basketball players.

By the time the second quarter came to a close, those same seniors had already given the crowd quite a show in a 58-40 Hornets’ victory over Marengo County.

The usual suspects did their thing, as Jerrod Moorer knocked down three three-pointers and threw down numerous dunks and Raheem Phillips threw one pinpoint pass after another, but the other seniors got in the mix as well.

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Lowell Furlow banked in a hook shot and dominated the boards. Kendell Motley, usually known for his defense, nailed a three-pointer during a 27-6 Dallas County run before halftime. The other seniors, Javaris McGuire and Devin Horstead, also scored on a night where seniors totaled all but two of the Hornets’ points.

At the end of the night, Dallas County head coach Willie Moore was a little emotional.

“Out of all the years I’ve coached, this is the first time I’ve been emotional,” Moore said. “I know what they’ve brought to this school and to our program. They are irreplaceable.”

It took the Hornets a couple of minutes to break free of Marengo, but once they did there was no looking back. Moorer knocked down back-to-back three-pointers with just over a minute to play in the first quarter to make it 16-7 Dallas County. Seconds later, Motley hit from deep to make it 21-9 Dallas County after the opening quarter.

The Hornets bounced the ball out the backboard to Moorer for an alley oop just 14 seconds into the second quarter.  Dallas County made its first four shots of the second quarter to make it 29-9 and the rout was on.

“They displayed their strengths and their skillsets tonight,” Moore said. “On senior night, of course they want to put on a pretty good performance for the fans that came out to see it.”

Moorer threw home several more dunks in the second quarter and in the third caught a second alley oop from Phillips to make it 48-17 Hornets. Dallas County led 56-29 after three, as Moore played many of the reserves in the second half.

“I played my young guys and the reason I wanted to do that is because from here on out, they might not get to play again,” Moore said. “I made a conscious effort to play them.”

The reserves got plenty of playing time, but Thursday was all about the seniors. Moore said they’ve all made incredible strides since they first took the court as freshmen.

“We lost a big class in 2011 and we had an influx in 2012 and they came in and started playing right away,” Moore said. “It’s real emotional because I’ve seen them grow as basketball players and from little boys into young men.”

Moorer scored 24 to lead the Hornets and Phillips had six points, although he also had numerous highlight reel assists. Motley also added nine points for Dallas County.

The Hornets (19-5) will close out their regular season Friday against Billingsley.


Dallas County 54, Marengo 34 (girls)

It’s been a tough season for the Dallas County Lady Hornets, but Thursday night their hard work finally paid off.

The Hornets won their first home game of the season and second game overall in a 54-34 victory over Marengo County. Kamisha Jackson scored 14 points to lead the way for Dallas County.

“I’m so happy for them because as a team I can’t even know how they feel after losses,” said Dallas County coach Charles Thompson. “… Nobody quit and that says a lot. I’m definitely proud of them. I hope that what we accomplished tonight can carry over into tomorrow night so we can finish the season in a great way.”

Dallas County led 27-16 at the half and as the Hornets lead grew in the second half, so they did their confidence.

Asia Bufford scored 12 points and Trinity Carter knocked down two second half three-pointers for Dallas County.

Kimmesha Jackson scored 14 points and Iesha Bouler 10 for Marengo.