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After a slow first half, the Fike High varsity boys basketball team found its rhythm and bounced Beddingfield for a second time this season, winning 81-58 on Wednesday night.
The 3-A Big East Conference Golden Demons (8-1) came out rather lethargic as the 2-A Eastern Plains Conference Bruins (1-4) got to the majority of loose balls and rebounds. Fike head coach Brent Secrest believed his team was still reeling from the effects of Tuesday night’s 90-54 loss at home to Farmville Central, ranked No. 1 among state 2-A teams by MaxPreps.
“We were still shell-shocked from last night,” Secrest said. “Kind of got that in the back of our heads still. It kind of took them a little while to get going. Thankfully they did.”
Fike came out in the second half with a renewed sense of urgency on defense. The Golden Demons started playing more physically, forcing the Bruins to turn it over, which fed into Fike’s style of play.
“We started playing a little bit tougher defense, and that’s what we’ve got to do. Our running game and getting easy buckets off our defense,” Secrest said.
In the third quarter, Fike scored as many points (25) as the Bruins would in the entire second half. Fike junior Moses Parker got going in the second half with 13 of his game-high 19 points. Senior teammates Elijahwon Cooper and Jeffrey Dickerson also flipped the switch with 11 points each in the second half. Dickerson scored all of his points in the second half while Cooper finished with 18.
“I’m feeling good because we got a win, coming back after a loss last night, so we did pretty good,” Parker said. “We came out slow, but we picked up the pace after halftime.”
For Beddingfield, which lost its fourth straight all by at least 11 points, the pattern was the same as the Bruins have struggled to put together a complete game.
“First half we played excellent — made shots, rebounded, got in transition and really gave them a scare,” Beddingfield head coach Joseph Dvozenja said. “It shows we’re getting better. Just a couple steps behind from where we need to be.”
Dvozenja said the Bruins were disadvantaged by Monday’s snow day robbing them of a practice day, and by three players being injured. At one point in the second half, two more players were out with injury and Beddingfield was down to seven players. Dvozenja is encouraged by his team’s effort and believes they are not far away from where they need to be.
“We can play good basketball,” Dvozenja said. “When our guys play together and really work hard, we can put some stuff together and really look good. We just got to make sure we get it for four quarters is all. As a young team gets older, they learn to play for four quarters, and right now we got two down — maybe two and half — and we got to get the other quarter and a half.”
M. Best 15, Gattis 13, Speight 11, Brantley 8, Huggins 5, J. Best 4, Highsmith 2
Parker 19, Cooper 18, Ward 16, Dickerson 11, Wilder 8, T. Atkinson 4, Lee 3, K. Atkinson 2
Score by quarters:
Beddingfield 20 13 10 15 — 58
Fike 17 10 25 29 — 81