Rockwood opens season with Eble title

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By Goose Lindsay

The Rockwood Middle School Tigers started off basketball season the same way they finished football season, with a championship as Saturday afternoon Bryan Powers' squad defeated York 58-48 to capture the 2010 Hollis Eble Tournament title at Oakdale.

The Tigers played a total of three games in the tournament and two of the games were easy wins. The Tigers downed Petros-Joyner in their season opener, 45-6, before topping Allardt in game two, 50-40. Rockwood was actually up by 37 points at halftime against Allardt before playing the reserves in the second half.

Rockwood vs. Petros-Joyner

The Oct. 18 season opener was little more than a scrimmage for Rockwood as they cruised to a 39-point victory.

Rockwood jumped out to an 18-2 lead after one period of play as Colyer Hicks led the way with 6 points while Zach Melton and Austin Cooper buried a 3-pointer each.

The game was put to rest by halftime as the Tigers outscored the Patriots 14-3 in the second period to make the score 32-5 at halftime. Drake Long and Kyron Inman combined for all of Rockwood's 14 points in the second period.

Everyone in a Tiger uniform played in the second half as Rockwood cruised to the 45-6 victory.

Hicks led Rockwood on the night with 11 points.

Rockwood (45) Melton 3, Penley 2, Cooper 3, Hicks 11, Campbell 2, Inman 6, Mayton 2, Neerman 4, Long 8, Andrews 2, Turner 2.

Rockwood vs. Allardt

Although the final score didn't indicate it, the Tigers had another easy game in the semifinals as they topped the Wildcats, 50-40.

Rockwood jumped on the Wildcats, 22-0, after six minutes of play and they upped their lead to 37-0 at halftime.

Long led the Tigers in the first half with 12 points while Colby Turner added 8.

Rockwood played their reserves in the second half and that allowed the Wildcats to pull within 10 points at the final buzzer.

Rockwood (50) Miller 2, Melton 4, Penley 3, Hicks 1, Campbell 2, Inman 7, Mayton 2, Neerman 7, Long 12, Grant 2, Turner 8.

Rockwood vs. York

In what was a size vs. speed championship, the Tigers pushed the tempo and outlasted a talented Dragon squad, 58-48.

Rockwood's speed was evident early as they raced out to an early 9-point lead early in the first period and then held a 17-10 advantage after six minutes of play. Long had a big opening period for the Tigers with 7 points while Turner and Inman scored 4 each.

The second period wouldn’t see any big spurts, but the Tigers did hold the lead throughout although York's Zack Sewell hit a big 3-pointer at the buzzer to make the score 27-22 at halftime in favor of the Tigers.

Rockwood exploded out of the gate in the third period as pushed their lead to as many as 15 points, but the Dragons started to chip away late in the quarter and cut the deficit to 42-31 with six minutes left to play. 

Long had a huge third period for the Tigers, scoring 11 points.

Like all good teams, York made a run at the Tigers in the final period and made things interesting. Powered by a 17-8 run, the Dragons pulled to within 50-48 with one minute left, but two free throws from Long followed by a pair of baskets Will Warner that sparked an 8-0 run to end the game.

Long ended the game with 26 points for Rockwood while Inman added 10.

 Rockwood (58) Miller 4, Hicks 1, Inman 10, Warner 6, Neerman 2, Long 26, Turner 9.