HOLLY SPRINGS – The combination of solid defense and the offensive productivity of Craig McDaniel, Deejay Flippin and Anthanee Doyle helped the Holly Springs varsity boys’ basketball team defeat Fuquay-Varina 67-49 Friday night in a Tri-Nine 4A Conference contest.
The Hawks (7-7 Tri-Nine, 11-10 overall) winners of four of their last five games to go over the .500 mark, hit eight 3-pointers – including seven combined in the second and third periods when they started to pull away.
“We’ve been up and down and had some bumps and bruises along the way,” said Holly Springs coach Thurman Jordan. “We’ve been playing well recently.
“We’re probably a better team in the half court than we are in transition. We missed a lot of easy shots tonight, but we’ve stressed all year to be patient on the offensive end. In the second quarter, we were able to knock down some shots and that gave us a chance to at least get into our press so we could cause some turnovers.”
Fuquay struggled on the offensive end in the first quarter, managing just two field goals. Flippin had a pair of baskets while McDaniel, Brandon Rencher and Donyell Lowe (dunk) staked the home team to as 10-5 lead.
McDaniel then found the zone behind the 3-point line in the second period. He made four treys and added two baskets for a whopping 16-point quarter as the Hawks went up 36-27 at halftime.
The Bengals tried to keep the game manageable behind guards D.J. Burt, Michael Verian and D.J. Lee. Burt finished with 19 points, including five of Fuquay’s six 3-pointers (Verian had the other one and finished with 10 points). Lee added nine points.
Burt and Verian combined for 15 of Fuquay’s 22 points in the second quarter. But the visitors could not overcome a multitude of turnovers caused by the Hawks’ pressure defense.
Behind the sharpshooting of Doyle, who hit for 11 points in the third period, including eight in a row (two were 3s), Holly Springs extended its lead to 21 points (53-32) before Fuquay closed the quarter on a 9-0 run in which Burt, Lee, D.J. Chavis and Dedric Byrd all scored.
The closest the Bengals could get was 12 points early in the fourth quarter (55-43) when Byrd scored underneath. But Flippin and McDaniel each had a dunk in the 14-6 Hawks’ run to close out the contest.
McDaniel led Holly Springs with 20 points while Flippin added 14 and Doyle chipped in with 12. Rencher added 10.