Town Crier Sports Staff
Buffalo Island Central overcame a lackluster first half performance with a strong third quarter as the Mustangs romped to a convincing 66-47 2A-3 conference victory over Bay Friday night at the Monette Athletic Complex.
The Yellowjackets, playing without all-conference guard Garrett Bollinger, hung tough with the Mustangs in the first half, taking advantage of BIC's cold shooting.
BIC jumped to a 10-4 lead, thanks to a pair of three pointers by Garrett Qualls and Terry Roach in the opening stanza. But the Jackets battled back to cut the lead to 10-7 on a Tyrone Harris bucket with 57 seconds left in the quarter before Lance Davis gave BIC a 12-7 lead heading into the second quarter.
The Mustangs threatened to blow the game open in the second period when they opened up a 20-11 lead at the 3:23 mark. A Trevor Matheny three pointer, a 10-foot jumper by Davis, and an offensive stick-back from senior Jordan Phillips capped off a 7-2 BIC run.
Bay fought their way back in the game, closing out the half with a 7-0 run of their own. Jerome Harris started the comeback with a driving lay-up, and after a free throw at the 1:45 mark by Asa Ladd, Harris connected again with an offensive stick-back to cut the lead to 20-16. Jesse Harris closed out the run with another lay-up as the Jackets trimmed the margin to 20-18 at the half.
Tyler Q. Griffin opened the third quarter with a 15-footer to knot the score at 20-20. Terry Roach had a chance to give BIC the lead back, but misfired on a pair of free throws, giving Bay a chance to grab their first lead since early in the game. The Jackets took advantage as Ladd drove the lane for the go-ahead bucket with 5:12 remaining in the third period.
The lead was short lived as the Mustangs' Jordan Griggs, playing his first game of the season, drilled back to back three pointers to begin what would be a 12-0 BIC run and the Mustangs never looked back. Garrett Qualls capped off the run with BIC's third trey of the quarter.
Jesse Harris broke the Yellowjacket drought with a free throw at the 3:00 mark, but the Mustangs closed out the quarter with a 10-2 spurt to take a 42-25 lead into the final period.
BIC continued their offensive assault in the final frame, leading by as many as 23 points to improve to 13-9 and 8-2 in conference play.
"I give Bay a lot of credit for being without their best player and still fighting as hard as they did," BIC Coach Bill Taylor said. "We scored 20 points in the first half and that is a horrible output. We did so many things wrong. Jordan Griggs gave us a big lift in the third quarter in his first game back. Bay had us on the ropes a little in the third quarter but we were able to answer. When we found out that Bollinger wasn't going to be able to play I feel like we had a mental letdown. But I was happy with the second half. Obviously, you have to be when you score 46. The second half we played well but the first half was a nightmare. We just weren't ready to play. Fortunately we were able to knock down some shots in the second half and pick up the win."
Qualls paced the Mustangs with 17 points while Roach and Davis pitched in 12 apiece. Griggs finished with nine points, all from three point land, while Phillips added eight more. Trevor Matheny tallied five, Matt Honnoll scored two while Ricky Cordero added one. BIC hit 8-17 from the foul line and drained eight three pointers on the night.
Bay (13-7, 5-4) put three players in double figures, led by Jerome Harris who scored 13. Twin brother Tyrone Harris pumped in 12 as did Tyler Q. Griffin.
In junior high action, BIC galloped to a 56-38 win behind Cody Smith's 20 points. Matt Taylor also hit double digits for the Mustangs with 12 points. Dalton Womack scored nine, Heath Hawkins netted six, Brandon Atkeison tallied four, Adrian Mondragon and Hunter Keiter scored two points apiece while Dominick Marquez added one point.
BIC held an 11-8 first period lead and upped their margin to 36-18 at the half. BIC put the game away in the third quarter, taking a 53-28 lead into the final frame.
Drew Sartin and Troy Brown led Bay with 11 and 10 points respectively.
BIC will return to action Tuesday night when they travel to Caraway to face the Riverside Rebels. The Mustangs will play host to Gosnell Friday night.