There was a packed house in Paragould Saturday night as the Buffalo Island Central Jr. High boy's faced Paragould for the Tri-County Championship.
Both teams had fared well throughout the tournament, leaving everyone anxious to see the two teams face one another. As the game began, however; BIC absolutely out hustled Paragould with Josh Nettles and Derek Rolland putting points on the board early. Losing 7-0 Paragould would finally put points on the board with 3:26 left in the first. They would strike again on their next drive scoring on an easy lay-up.
Not wanting his team to lose their edge Josh Shepard launched a three to give his team a 10-4 lead. BIC's Brooks Taylor picked himself up off the floor to make two free throws giving the Mustangs two more. Paragould would try to get something started making a short jumper, but Brandon Ballard answered right back dominating the final seconds of the first with a lay-up and a three pointer leading his team into the second quarter ahead 17-7.
Brandon Ballard wouldn't stop there, however; opening the second quarter with an offensive rebound that he put up for his seventh point of the game. Then BIC's Cord Rose would come up with a steal that led to a Brooks Taylor score.
Thanks to some effective ball movement and tremendous defensive depth Brandon Ballard was able to score eleven points in the remaining minutes of the second quarter leaving Paragould shocked as they went into the half behind 34-12.
Turnovers would haunt Paragould in the third quarter. BIC's L.B. Cole would immediately steal the ball leading to a Brandon Ballard three. Then Cord Rose would step-up to make a steal leading to another Brandon Ballard three-pointer. Now losing 43-14 Paragould seemed unable to effectively move the ball, therefore; letting the Mustangs dominate the floor.
Noticing the victory was inevitable Coach Taylor put his subs in to allow as many of his players as possible play for the trophy. BIC's Matthew Ibanez would take advantage of this time to make an excellent showing making two three-pointers in a row.
In a complete blowout the BIC Mustangs went home the Tri-County Tournament Champions winning by a score of 64-34.
Leading all scorers was Brandon Ballard with 29 points. Others scoring were Brooks Taylor with seven, Josh Nettles with six, Matthew Ibanez with six, Josh Shepard with four, L.B. Cole with three, Derek Rolland with three, Randy Ibanez with two, Cris Deeds with two,and Terry Roach also had two.