The Union Spartans headed to face North Duplin in their recent conference game this past Friday. Splitting outcomes at with the Rebels, the women came out on top 56-32 while the men fell short 71-59.
From the start of this game it was all Union, they jumped out to an early lead in the first and never looked back taking a commanding 24 point win.
“I am extremely proud of our young ladies, this was a really good win for us. We were able to jump out on them early and we kept being aggressive,” said head coach Bryant Register.
By the end of the first quarter Union was controlling the flow of the game with a seven point lead. Going for 10 points to end the period that had decent play out of their offense. The most impressive part was on the defensive front as they held the Rebels to just three points.
The second quarter picked up for both teams as offense got it going specially for North Duplin. The Rebels added 10 more points this quarter with 13 as Union did it better by a point with 14. At the half the Spartans were still in front 24-16.
“I challenged our team at the half to keep playing hard and they responded as we outscored them 32 to 16 in the second half,” said Register.
The this is were they wrapped this game up thanks to the best offensive quarter of the night. Blowing up the scoreboard with 18 points they vastly extended the lead as North Duplin only had eight.
Add on another 14 in the fourth and a solid defensive showing to hold the Rebels to just eight points again and the Spartans walked away with a conference win.
“Again I’m really proud of our effort the entire night and it was great to see everyone get playing time,” he concluded.
LaTyra English led the way with her 19 points with help from NiKya Owens, who ended with 11. Amaya Jackson, Lazarriah Johnson, Kaia Johnson and Justice Johnson all contributed. They had eight, seven, six and five respectively.
The Union men weren’t as luck as the girls this past Friday as they couldn’t handle the boys of North Duplin on the road. They played an exceptional first half but ended up going down by double digits, falling to the Rebels 71-59.
The first quarter saw the visiting Spartans trailing by four by the end of the first eight minutes. Going for 13, they let the Rebels outplay them as they went for 17.
The second quarter was a complete turn around as Union doubled their scoring efforts. Hitting a ridiculous 26 points and holding the home team to just 15 they took the lead back. After two quarters of play Union was ahead 39-34.
Then in the second half they completely fell apart on both ends of the floor. They dropped quite a bit in scoring with only 10 to end the third. While defense allowed 18 to be scored on them as they lost their five-point lead.
The fourth was basically the same with Union going for yet another 10 points. The defense fell apart even more in the final period letting the opposition go for 21, leading to their loss in this one by 12 points.
Derrick Smith, as usual, led the attack for the Spartans with 19. Cole Bass who finished with 11.
The girls rise to 5-11 over and 3-5 in conference, while the boys fall to 7-11 overall and 4-4 in their conference play. They both head to face county rival the Lakewood Leopards on Tuesday.
Reach Michael Hardison at email@example.com. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter @SampsonInd.