Clarksdale wins at Itawamba Agricultural, 68-56
By Josh Troy
The Clarksdale High School boys opened the Class 4A MHSAA basketball playoffs on the road, but they were up to the task. The No. 3 Wildcats (15-11, 4-4) won on Tuesday night at No. 2 Itawamba Agricultural High School 68-56. “We played pretty well,” said Clarksdale coach Corney George. “The defense was pretty decent, and we made some shots. The guys came ready to play.”
The Wildcats were forced to play on the road after finishing in third place in the Region 3-4A District Tournament, but George knew what they were capable of doing.“ I wasn’t surprised because I know my kids can do it due to the fact that they’re getting it done,” he said. “I know they’re capable of getting it done.” George said he says something to motivate his team before every game, but the Wildcats were ready to play. “I believe our key was handling pressure in the fourth quarter and getting baskets off their press, and it kind of put us over,” he said.
Senior guard and forward Kelley Jones led the Wildcats with 21 points, senior point guard Gregory Neely, freshman guard, and forward Kamarrius Rash scored 14 apiece, junior point guard Patrick Broomfield contributed 8, senior guard and forward Henry Espy and junior power forward and center Kyle Coleman scored 4 each, and senior guard and small forward Isaiah Galmore scored 3. Coleman led the Wildcats in scoring the Region 3-4A championship with 12 points en route to a 36-33 victory against Gentry High School. Jones and Broomfield scored 15 points each in a 70-55 district tournament semifinals loss to Greenwood.
George likes having different athletes lead the team in scoring each game. “That’s kind of a good thing,” he said. “The teams that watch film can’t just zoom in on one person and stop him from going.” On Saturday, Clarksdale is at Choctaw Central at 6 p.m. with a trip to the state quarterfinals on the line. “We’ve got to do the same thing we did the other day, come ready to play, make some shots, defend, rebound,” George said.
Photo credit: Jaleesa Collins