Photo: Fans packed the Pontotoc High School gymnasium for the day-long Tangle on the Trail Classic. (Bob Bakken/desotocountynews.com)
Three DeSoto County boys’ basketball teams played in the annual Tangle on the Trail Classic at Pontotoc Saturday, and only one team won, but it was a big win. Olive Branch knocked off previously unbeaten and top-ranked Yazoo City 44-38, behind Player of the Game Jerry Wall’s 13 points.
Center Hill was taken to overtime before Cleveland Central edged the Mustangs 58-54, and Horn Lake dropped a 65-30 decision to a solid Canton squad.
Here are recaps from the three games at the Tangle on the Trail Classic involving DeSoto County squads.
OLIVE BRANCH 44, YAZOO CITY 38
Yazoo City entered the game 11-0 and in some circles ranked number one among Mississippi high school boys’ basketball teams. But the Conquistadors held on, despite being held to just five points in the entire fourth quarter.
The Indians took a 9-8 lead after one quarter but the Quistors took their first lead at 11-10 early in the second quarter and quickly built a 23-12 lead at halftime. Olive Branch held off Yazoo City in the third quarter with Zahir Gutierrez’s three-point basket giving the Quistors a 39-26 lead late in the period. The Indians crawled back in the fourth quarter, trailing 41-34 with three minutes remaining. But, Olive Branch held on for the six-point victory. Jerry Wall III led Olive Branch with 13 points, followed by Caleb Hunt with 10 and Gutierrez added nine. Yazoo City was paced by Tamarion Hoover with a game-high 18 points and Damarion Winston added 11.
CLEVELAND CENTRAL 58, CENTER HILL 54 (OVERTIME)
The Mustangs had to battle back from behind to force the extra period, but the Wolves were able to edge Center Hill for the four-point victory. Cleveland Central opened the game with a 17-10 lead at the end of the first quarter, a lead aided by three straight inbounds turnovers by Center Hill against the Wolves’ pressure defense. Cleveland Central continued the pressure in the second quarter and had a 33-22 lead at halftime. The Mustangs came back in the third quarter and drew within 42-34 at the end of the period. With 2:38 left in regulation, the Mustangs got within 44-41 and just before the fourth quarter buzzer, Marshall Smith got a late basket that tied the game at 47-47, forcing overtime. Cleveland Central outscored Center Hill 11-7 in the four-minute overtime period.
Jaidyn Rankins led the Mustangs in scoring with 16 points and Jonathan Mitchell added 14. Tayler Berryhill scored a game-high 20 points for Cleveland Central.
CANTON 65, HORN LAKE 30
Horn Lake had no answers for Canton’s Jamarion Fleming and his game-high 26 points in the Tigers’ lopsided victory over the Eagles. Fleming had 12 points in the first half and added 14 more in the second half of the victory.
Canton took a quick 6-0 lead to start the game and led 24-9 after one quarter of play. The Tigers held the lead in the second quarter and took a 33-18 advantage into the locker room at intermission. That lead grew to 51-28 in the third quarter and when the lead grew to 63-28 in the fourth quarter, a continuous clock started with the 35 point lead to the end of the game.
Deandre Lewes added 12 points for the Tigers. Horn Lake was led by Jordan Simmons with nine points.
Saturday, Dec. 16
Prep boys basketball
Cleveland Central 58, Center Hill 54 (overtime)
Canton 65, Horn Lake 30
Olive Branch 44, Yazoo City 38
Lake Cormorant 46, West Memphis, Ark. 40
Prep girls basketball
Wynne, Ark. 52, Lake Cormorant 44