TRINITY — The evening started off well for Surry Central, but the nightcap didn’t go their way.
The Golden Eagles played their first official games of the 2017-18 season on Tuesday night, with the girls routing host Trinity 58-33, but the boys getting off to slow start and falling in their contest.
The Central boys shot an anemic 24 percent from the floor and even worse than that on two-point shots (16 percent), and as a result, were never really in the game against the Bulldogs. Trinity held a 15-4 lead at the end of the first quarter. The Eagles rallied to chop the deficit down to 22-17 by halftime, but then score just two points in the third quarter. The hosts coasted to the 46-30 victory.
Senior Martin Palacios led Central with nine points, mainly due to getting to the free-throw line and making all six of his attempts from there. The Eagles picked up a dozen points each from 3-pointers (where they made four of 10 tries) and on free throws (12-17). However, they attempted 19 two-point shots and made just three of them.
Brandon Norman had seven points, with Sy Kidd and Mason Wood each scoring three.
Central had just 21 rebounds in the contest, and only seven assists to go with 19 turnovers.
The girls’ game was more to the liking of Golden Eagle rooters.
The Lady Bulldogs had actually begun their season as soon as they were allowed to, and already had three games under their belts by the time they took on Central. Nevertheless, the Lady Eagles came out and made a statement in the first quarter, forcing Trinity (2-2) into a faster pace than it wanted to play and cruising to an 18-9 lead after one quarter of play.
The hosts tried to get things back under control in the second quarter, but Surry Central kept its foot on the gas and kept rolling to a 31-16 halftime lead. The Lady Bulldogs played on roughly equal terms with their guests in the third quarter and the score was 39-26 going into the final eight minutes. However, the fourth quarter went much like the first did, and the result was a 25-point blowout win for the Lady Eagles.
Surry Central displayed a strong inside-out game in its opener, with junior guard Joley Cabe leading the way with 13 points, and inside players Taylor Coe (10 points, 10 rebounds) and Tara Blevins (nine points, 10 rebounds) all very effective in the road victory. Nine different Lady Eagles scored, including Taylor Cochran with seven points, Savanah Atkins with six, Hannah Beasley with five, Alea Doby and Claire Via with three each and Brooke Snow with two.
If there was any area of concern for Central in its opener, it would be that the team missed 14 free throws, shooting 18-32 (56 percent). However, the team was aggressive on the boards and had a whopping 49 rebounds, 24 of them offensive. Cabe, a 5’4” guard, had nine herself, with Doby and Snow each grabbing seven. Cabe also had four of Central’s 13 steals.
Surry Central will return to action and make its home debut on Tuesday, when Starmount comes to town for its own season opener.
Reach John via Twitter at @johncate73.