Terrell County Super 6er Dekoven Ware scored 26 points in the Greenwave's win against Westover on Saturday in Dawson.
DAWSON — Talk about having a team’s number.
Terrell County not only has Westover’s, but the Greenwave know just what to do with it.
They beat Westover again on Saturday — for the fifth time in a row, for those counting — running away with a 66-55 win that should help Terrell County’s confidence for the stretch run of the season.
“We had to win this game,’’ said Terrell County point guard Jevon McIntosh, who has matured in his first season as a starter. He scored 15 against Westover and ran the floor against The Herald No. 4 Patriots’ pressure all night.
“We wanted to win this game so bad,’’ McIntosh said. “Everyone thought we weren’t going to have a good team this year, and we are showing them.’’
They have been showing Westover for a while. Saturday’s win was the fifth straight against Westover in the last three years, including a 71-69 victory two weeks ago at Westover, where the Greenwave won the game in the final seconds.
They won this one Saturday in the third quarter, but the recipe was the same.
One part Dekoven.
One part Ware.
Herald Super 6er Dekoven Ware scored 25 against Westover two weeks ago, and he took over the game again Saturday, scoring 22 of his game-high 26 points in the second half. He went 7-of-9 from the field in the second half and 10-for-14 from two-point range for the game after missing a couple of 3s.
“I needed to get away from that 3-point line and go inside,’’ said Ware, who also had eight rebounds. “My coaches told me my game needs to be inside. We started pounding the ball inside (in the second half) and that’s where they couldn’t stop me.’’
Ware simply went inside in the third quarter and left Westover in his wake as he personally outscored the Patriots, 12-9, in the quarter to lift Terrell County to a 44-32 lead.
Westover, which had owned the boards in the first half, out-rebounding Terrell County, 23-13, couldn’t find the basket to start the second half. The Patriots went 10-of-23 from the field in the first half, including two savage dunks from Kel Miller, who brought the packed house down twice in the second quarter.
But the Patriots, who led, 23-21, at halftime, had frostbite to open the second half, missing their first eight shots. By the time Josh Black finally hit a short jumper with 3:36 left in the third, Ware had taken the game over and put it in Terrell County’s hands.
And that’s where it stayed.
“We just had a terrible third quarter,’’ Westover coach Dallis Smith said. “We were 0-for 8. We couldn’t buy a basket. We couldn’t throw it in the ocean.
“That third quarter gave them momentum, and we had to fight back. We dug a hole at their place. You can’t do that. That third quarter was the difference.’’
Westover, which is now 13-7 overall, was led by Brandon Hudson’s 16-point night, as well as T. J. Cromer and Miller, who each scored 12 points.
The Greenwave (14-7) are in a rebuilding year after losing four starters from a team that went to the Class A Final Four two years in a row and finished runner-up in the state last year, and the two wins against Westover can’t help but build their confidence.
“I was impressed with my point guard (McIntosh),’’ Terrell County coach John Davis said. “He was able to handle the ball and keep everything under control. He was able to maintain his composure.’’
Davis said they talked at halftime about getting the ball to Ware inside. The lead changed hands eight times in the first half and it appeared it would be another last-shot finish. Then Ware went to work and changed that.
“We started pounding the ball inside in the second half,’’ Davis said. “And we played good defense. We always point to defense. They can shoot the ball (at Westover) and they missed eight in a row to start the second half. We point that to playing good defense.’’