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Hancock County Invitational

January 16, 2011
Warsaw High School

West Hancock ends skid with easy win

West Hancock's Mac Schlicher (34) and Nate Parker defend against Southeastern's Brady Holst during Monday's game in the Hancock County Invitational Tournament.
By Brad Cameron/Sports Editor
Published: Wednesday, January 12, 2011 2:36 PM CST AUGUSTA, Ill. -- The West Hancock Titans got a needed win Monday.

West Hancock ended a three-game losing streak with a dominating performace against Southeastern. The Titans scored 25 of the first 30 points in the second half and rolled to a 71-35 win in the Hancock County Invitational Tournament Monday at Southeastern High School.

"This was a must win," said West Hancock Head Coach Reno Pinkston. "We came off a three-game skid. In my career, we haven't done that very often. It is hard to remember when we have done that. Seth (Pinkston) and I talked about that at home last night. He talked to his teammates about how important this game is.

"Southeastern just came off a game in which they lost to Keokuk by two. They are playing in their home confines where I think they have played 14 times this year, so they are used to their enviroment, obviously. They are playing better than they were earlier in the season, so anything can happen if you let it happen. Nate (Parker) hit a few shots early on that helped us. We attacked the rim, but it was all of the little things of playing the game the right way that I liked."

West Hancock scored the first seven points and led 12-5 at the end of the opening quarter. Paxton Harmon scored four consecutive points early in the second quarter to extend the lead to 18-8, but Southeastern battled back with eight straight points. Zach Owen and Matthew Ramsey each hit a three-pointer to make the score 18-16.

After a West Hancock timeout, the second by the Titans in a 56 second span, Parker hit a three-pointer. West Hancock went on a 13-2 run with Parker and Harmon combining for all 13 points to push the lead to 31-18 late in the first half.

The Titans put the game out of reach in the third quarter. Pinkston opened the second half with a three-pointer and a lay-up off of a Southeastern turnover. Justin Wood made one of two free throws for the Suns, but Parker hit a three-pointer to start an 11-0 run. Pinkston added a jumper from the wing, Jeremy Ferguson made a three-pointer, and Parker finished the run with a three-point play.

West Hancock went six of eight from the field and five of six from the foul line, while Southeastern made just one of 10 field goal attempts and turned the ball over seven times in the third quarter.

The Titans led 51-25 at the end of the third quarter, and Parker scored the first five points of the fourth quarter to extend the margin to 56-25. Pinkston pulled his starters from the game with 6:35 remaining in the fourth quarter.

"I really enjoyed watching our guys play tonight," Pinkston said. "The last three games, at times it has been difficult to watch because they played a game with which I'm not familiar. Tonight, they were doing the little things you're trying to teach every day. We got back to doing the things we like to do."

Parker scored 27 points to lead West Hancock. Pinkston added 11 points. Harmon netted nine points. Parker Gibbs added eight points, all in the fourth quarter. Mac Schlicher had six points. Ferguson tallied five points. Austin Hardy contributed three points, and Clint Mecklenburg finished with two points.

Ramsey scored 15 points to lead Southeastern.

West Hancock plays Illini West at 7 p.m. in the only game of the tournament Wednesday.

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Mustangs hand Keokuk first loss in tournament Titans defeat Brown County

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