Bears fall to Gryphons

Published 1:42 pm Friday, December 17, 2010

AHOSKIE – Three minutes changed it all.

Hertford County High School appeared headed for their fifth victory this season, leading 47-41 midway through the third quarter. A three-minute span, however, changed the lead and the momentum as Rocky Mount surged ahead and never looked back.

Shabazz Atkins buried a three-pointer with just over three minutes to play in the third to give the Bears a 47-41 lead, but it was the last time Hertford County scored in the period.

Tevin Taylor scored to start the spurt and was followed by a free throw from Exzavier Cooper. Tecoby Hines then hit back-to-back buckets before Bruce Applewhite closed the quarter with a free throw that gave the Gryphons a 49-47 lead.

Kenyatta Bullock scored to open the fourth quarter as Rocky Mount pushed ahead by four (51-47).

Jordan Jones finally stopped the run for HCHS with a hoop, but Applewhite hit another free throw.  Jones scored again to close the gap to 52-51, but Hines answered with four straight free throws to help Rocky Mount pull away to a 56-51 lead.

Cooper added another hoop for the Gryphons, but the Bears came back with a field goal from Dontez Tyler and a D’Isaac Jordan free throw to close back to 58-54.

Rocky Mount, however, scored the next nine points to take a 67-54 advantage with 3:01 to play.

The Bears didn’t quit, however, as Tyler converted a three-point play and Wayne Simmons scored from behind the arc to whittle the lead to 67-60.

After a Cooper bucket, Jordan buried a triple and Jones scored from the charity stripe to get HCHS within 69-64 with just 1:13 to play.

Rocky Mount, however, converted four straight at the charity stripe to pull ahead 73-65.

Petey Boone added another triple as the Bears closed the gap to 73-68, but Applewhite scored from the free throw line to push it to 74-68.

Boone again buried a triple to close the gap to three (74-71), but Rocky Mount hit 3-of-4 from the free throw line to lead 77-71 before a late field goal by Dekimis Perry.

Despite the loss, the Bears put four players in double figures led by Boone’s 23. Jones added 19 and Jordan and Tyler chipped in 10 points each.

Cooper led Rocky Mount with 19 while Hines had 17. Applewhite and Bullock added 10 each.

The contest was a close one throughout with the Bears taking an early 8-2 lead only to see Rocky Mount storm back and tie the score. The Bears got that lead thanks to hoops from Jones, Perry and a pair from Jordan.

The Gryphons stormed back to tie the game before Hertford County eventually led 17-15 after one quarter.

They held that same two-point edge (27-25) late in the second period, but the Bears closed the first half with a 4-0 run – thanks to buckets by Jones and Simmons – to lead 31-25 at the intermission.

The Bears opened the third quarter on a 6-0 run thanks to baskets by Boone and Perry and two free throws from Tyler, taking a 37-25 lead with 5:55 to play in the period.

They were able to keep the lead until late in the period when the Gryphons went on the run that changed the game.

The Bears dropped to 4-3 overall with the loss. They will be back in action Monday when they host Plymouth.