The Rams of No. 1 Jackson Provine found themselves in an early ten point hole to cross-town rival Jackson Murrah on Thursday night but turned on the jets to win going away 83-54.
In front of a packed house which included many players and some coaches from rival JPS schools which had the night off, the Mustangs of Jackson Murrah came out looking to make a statement. Behind two baskets each from Daniel Francis and Pierre Simpson, Murrah sprinted out to a 10-0 lead. The Rams, meanwhile, didn't score their first points until over three and a half minutes had elapsed, those points coming on a couple of free throws by LSU signee, Jalen Courtney. After the teams traded baskets Provine scored six straight points to cut the lead to four but still found themselves trailing at the end of the first quarter 18-13.
Back to back Dundrecous Nelson three pointers early in the second quarter pushed the Mustang lead to 24-15 a minute and a half into the second quarter, but at that point the Rams took control. The Rams closed the quarter with a 22-5surge to turn the nine point deficit into an eight point, 37-29 lead at the half.
The start of the third quarter saw the Rams expand their lead to 16 before Murrah showed a little fire with a 9-2 run to get the lead back down to nine. Provine, however, ended the quarter with an eleven point lead, 57-46.
The fourth quarter was where it all came apart at the seams for the Mustangs. Mustang turnovers and bad shot selection allowed the Rams to opened the quarter with a 20-3 run, expanding the lead to 77-49 on Jarren Mallory's three pointer with 3:56 left in the game. From that point on it was just a matter of what would the final score be as the Rams cleared the bench on the way to an 83-54 win.
As has been the case so far this season, Provine showed great team balance with four players in double figures and another with nine points. Courtney led the Rams with 23 points, on 8 of 10 shooting from the field, and 11 boards. He was followed by Roger Woods with 14 points and 8 boards, Marcellus Hansberry with 13 points and Jarvis Summers with 11 points and 6 assist. Mallory just miss double figures with 9 points, all of them coming on trey balls. For the Mustangs Pierre Simpson was the leading scorer with 16 points. Laquinton Ross scored 11 points, with at least 5 blocks. Most of Ross' points, 9 to be exact came in the seconds half , as he sat out the rest of the first half after picking up his third foul with 5:14 left in the second quarter. Murrah led 24-21 at the time and his absence really hurt the Mustangs. Nelson and Francis both score 9 points apiece.
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