Eastern Alamance’s varsity basketball teams once again held court at home Friday evening, winning a pair of conference battles with Morehead inside Tal Jobe Gymnasium. The EAHS women’s squad crushed the Panthers, 65-25, while the Eagles men’s team stunned Morehead, 61-47, who entered the game atop the league standings. The EAHS men’s team has now won back-to-back games after getting off to a disappointing start.
As they’ve done against numerous other overwhelmed opponents early on this season, the Eagles women’s squad dominated the game against Morehead Friday evening with their aggressive defense and high-tempo transition game. EAHS converted numerous steals and defensive rebounds into high-percentage opportunities on the other end of the floor. When the first half was said and done, the Eagles had built a commanding 47-7 lead.
With a running clock making the second half go a little more quickly, EAHS head coach Tim Krotish was able to work different rotations and get everyone playing time. Laila Anderson and Hali Watkins were once again in double figures with 17 points and 15 points, respectively, while Ginia Lawson added nine rebounds as the Eagles dominated, 65-25. The victory was Eastern’s fourth straight win in league play, and improves the Eagles’ record to 4-1 in Mid-State games, and 9-3 overall.
The Eagles have a huge matchup in Elon this coming Friday night with current Mid-State leader Western Alamance, who has gotten off to a 5-0 conference start. With a win over the Warriors, the Eagles can stake a claim to a share of first place in the conference race, while solidifying its already strong NCHSAA 3A playoff resume.
The Eagles men’s squad faced a significant challenge from Morehead, who entered the game with an 11-1 record, sitting in first place in the Mid-State Conference standings. The visiting Panthers controlled the flow and pace for much of the first half, but were not able to separate themselves from Eastern. Leading 15-12 at the end of the first quarter, Morehead took a 31-27 lead into halftime.
Things changed dramatically in the second half, however, as EAHS got its defense and fast-paced offensive game working and took control. Eastern turned a four-point halftime deficit into a one-point lead, 41-40, heading into the fourth quarter behind outstanding defense, holding Morehead to just nine points over the eight minute third quarter stretch.
The Eagles continued their excellent defensive play in the fourth quarter and blew the game open, out-scoring the Panthers 20-7 over the final eight minutes to pull away for a 61-47 win, which improves Eastern’s record to 2-7 overall, and 2-3 in league play. EAHS got a team-high 20 points from Darius Kane, who has returned with a bang after missing several games with an injured shoulder. Eastern got 17 points from Nick Blackwell, while Caleb Hester was also in double figures with 10 points.
EAHS men’s team has a quick turnaround, as they play a makeup game Saturday afternoon back inside Tal Jobe Gymnasium against Cummings. The Eagles will not play the Cummings varsity girls a second game. The Cavaliers elected to cancel the remainder of their 2019-20 schedule following Eastern’s Holiday Hoopla event.