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STANHOPE — Behind a 30-point explosion in the second quarter, the Southern Nash High varsity boys basketball team put itself in position to contend for the No. 2 playoff spot in the 3-A Big East Conference on Tuesday night with a 64-62 victory over Rocky Mount.
The Firebirds, observing Senior Night for eight individuals, improved to 13-9 overall and 6-3 within the Big East. Rocky Mount’s loss clinched the regular-season championship for Northern Nash as the Gryphons dropped to 17-4 in all games and 7-2 within the league. Should Southern Nash defeat Franklinton and Northern Nash topple Rocky Mount during Thursday’s final round of conference games, then a one-game playoff for the No. 2 seed from the Big East will become necessary.
Southern Nash led 45-30 at the half before Rocky Mount utilized full-court pressure to climb back into the game. With 40 seconds remaining, senior Tyler Wilson made a pair of free throws to give the Firebirds the lead for good.
Wilson’s 21 points led Southern Nash on a night where the Firebirds saw Demetruis Townes, Dae’One Wilkins, Cory Foster, Kendrick Bell, Jalen Lucas, Hunter Perry and Tavaris Brown also play their final regular-season home game.
ROCKY MOUNT (62)
Ellis 4, Jones 27, Parker 4, Moore 5, Battle 7, Gray 5, Ward Jr. 7, Silver 2.
SOUTHERN NASH (64)
Townes 2, Wilson 21, Wilkins 6, Foster 8, Bell 2, Dellavalle 8, Lucas 10, Brown 3, Edmundson 2.
Score by quarters:
Rocky Mount 18 12 13 19 — 62
Southern Nash 15 30 7 12 — 64