By Lannis Timmons
NCH had just beat Western Hills Wednesday to extend their winning streak to six games for an 8-2 overall record, while Aiken came in at 5-8. Both teams came in really excited since they’re only 2.7 miles apart.
Aiken jumped off to a 5-2 lead early in the first quarter, but after coach Shannon Minor called a timeout, the Trojans got on a roll. They went on a 6-0 run to take the lead 8-5, with Lorenzo Sparks leading the way with 6 points. At the end of the first quarter the Trojans lead, 16-11.
As the second quarter started, Charles Swain started to make his presence felt. The senior made plays on defense, rebounded on both ends, as well as slashing to the basket. D’Arris Dean tried to keep Aiken close as the junior scored 8 points in the first half, and the Trojans went into the locker room ahead 32-25.
As the second half started, NCH picked up the pace up, as they created a number of problems for the Falcons. Tyler Anderson, Sparks and Swain got in the passing lanes getting steal after steal. Then Charles Swain got hot from behind the 3-point line, as the senior connected on three 3-point shots, two in the third quarter to help the Trojans pull away by 20 points, 52-32, as the third quarter came to a close. Also, Tyler Anderson got on the glass, the 5’9 senior guard got three rebounds in a row, two in which he laid back in. On defense, the Trojans held the Falcons to 7 points, as they finished with 20.
Dean was the only player from Aiken that was able to score in double figures, as he collected 13 points for the Falcons who didn’t give up, as they lost the last quarter 16-13. Meanwhile, Lorenzo Sparks finished with a game-high 26 points, as Charles Swain scored 19 points, and Tyler Anderson got in double figures with 11 points.
Tournament time will be here before you know it, I’m looking forward to see what kind of finish NCH can have, as they travel to play 7-3 Cincinnati Christian, and the Falcons will go on the road and play Taft who is 6-4, winning the last 4 games.