Former Worth County star Jamorris Gaines had six steals Thursday night to help lead Albany Tech to a 100-60 rout of Brewton-Parker in its 2011-12 season opener.
ALBANY -- Albany Tech could not have been more excited for Thursday's season opener against Brewton-Parker.
After all, the Titans were finally able to brandish their highly talented team that features several former Southwest Georgia high school standouts.
In a physical game that saw one player get knocked out, Albany Tech (1-0) started the season in convincing fashion, blowing out the Barons, 100-60, at ASU's HPER Gym.
With 38 turnovers in the game, 19 in each half, Brewton-Parker (0-2) had no answer for the Titans' halfcourt trap. Former Worth County star Jamorris Gaines and Antonio Allen led the team with six steals apiece, opening the door for several fastbreak points.
"We just came out and played hard and executed our (gameplan) and came out on top," said Gaines who finished with 11 points, three rebounds and two assists. "We had good rotation and I was in the right place at the right time."
Coming off the bench, former Westover star and 2008-09 Herald Player of the Year Terrance Noel led all scorers with 15 points. Aubrey Daniel added 14 points and Gary Colley scored 10.
Brewton-Parker's Lyndon Limonius had a team-high of 10 points with all his field goals coming from behind the 3-point line.
The Barons went scoreless the first four minutes of the game, largely because of missed shots. The Titans, however, didn't do much better at first during that stretch as they only put up four points.
But then they got cooking.
"I think they were just nervous and there was a lot of excitement in the locker room," Albany Tech head coach Sylvester Patterson explained. "They have been hyped all week and they missed a lot of layups and free throws. I told them at halftime, now that they have the jitters out the way, let's go out and play defense and knock down some shots."
Poor shooting was not the only problem for the Barons. They quickly got in the foul trouble and their size disadvantage was exploited on the glass. Consequently, Albany Tech built a 12-point lead and ended the half ahead 33-21.
When play resumed, things quickly went from bad to worse for Brewton-Parker thanks to its inability to take care of the basketball. The Titans opened the half on a 12-5 run, increasing their lead to 19 points.
"Way too many," Brewton-Parker head coach LeVelle Gerrald said of the turnovers. "We're young and have a lot of guys who are ineligible so we are going with who we have."
Even with a team dominated by freshmen, the Barons' struggles with Albany Tech's halfcourt defense left Gerrald baffled.
"We had trouble with it and I don't know why because we prepared for it," he said. "It was a simple press breaker we put in but it was a lot of pressure they put on us."
The game had its share of highly physical play, but things boiled over in the second half when Brewton-Parker's Jordan Forte was knocked out the game courtesy of an elbow to the head from former Terrell County star Robert Ellis.
The play seemed to take the life out of Brewton-Parker as the deficit dramatically increased afterward.
"He is one of the toughest players we have," Gerrald said. "He is basically our offense so without him we had to scramble to find somebody to step up and fill the role of scorer."
The physical play went noticed on both sides.
"The referees let them play and sometimes it did look as if things got out of hand," Patterson said. "We are a physical team, and I think they tried to match our intensity. Our conference is very physical so that is how we practice."
Despite the 40-point win, the Titans know they have much to improve on as the season progresses.
"We have to work harder to get better shot selection," Daniel said, referring to the Titans' 39-percent shooting in the first half.
The percentage significantly increased in the second half (54 percent) thanks to the Titans' fastbreak points.
The Titans will play Brewton-Parker again next week in Mount Vernon.