Conference opener a success as Chatham Central cruises past South Stanly

Posted 12/13/19

BEAR CREEK — No matter the sport, winning your conference opener is always a step in the right direction.

Despite being hampered by three first-half fouls, Michael Moore tossed in 20 points …

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Conference opener a success as Chatham Central cruises past South Stanly

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Posted

BEAR CREEK — No matter the sport, winning your conference opener is always a step in the right direction.

Despite being hampered by three first-half fouls, Michael Moore tossed in 20 points prior to intermission to help Chatham Central forge a 42-22 lead at the break and the Bears went on to cage the Rowdy Rebel Bulls of South Stanly 66-55 in the Yadkin Valley 1A Conference opener for both teams Friday night in Gerald L. Binkley Gymnasium.

Posting their fifth straight win over the Rebel Bulls, Chatham Central improved to 3-2 for the season, while South Stanly fell to 2-2 overall.

Moore finished with a game-high 25 points and Preston Cox pitched in a dozen for the Bears, who connected on 42% (21-of-50) of their field goal attempts and won the battle of the boards by a 28-16 margin to aid in counteracting 15 turnovers.

Brandon Teller came off the bench to lead the Rebel Bulls with 17 points while Justin Gaddy, who came into the contest averaging 21 points an outing, was limited to 14. South Stanly shot 34 percent (17-of-50) from the floor while only committing five turnovers.

“We executed our plays the first half in finding the open man, and rebounding was a big key along with holding their top scorer to just 3 points over the first 16 minutes,” said Chatham Central coach Robert Burke. “When three of our starters got in early foul trouble we turned to our depth on the bench and had guys come in who provided offense while playing solid in-your-face defense in containing South Stanly’s outside shooters.”

Rebel Bulls’ coach Sean Whitley remarked Chatham Central did a good job the first half in taking away his team’s ability to drive into the lane.

“Their guards really force the issue and denied us inside penetration the first half, which resulted in us settling for jump shots,” Whitley said. “When some of their starters got into foul trouble they just seemed to reload off the bench and not miss a beat, while their aggressiveness in the paint allowed them to control the boards.”

A pair of Lucas Skertich free throws and turnaround basket in the lane, sandwiched around Moore’s three-pointer from the left wing, staked the Bears to a 7-0 advantage in the first two minutes of play before South Stanly narrowed the margin to two following Teller’s floater off the left baseline with 4:47 to go in the opening stanza.

But a Skertich trey from the left side 24 seconds later ignited another 7-0 Chatham Central run that boosted the winners’ lead to 14-5, and the rout was on.

Following Preston Cox’s three-pointer from the left wing in the closing seconds of the first quarter that put the Bears up 22-11, Moore registered 10 points in the second period as Chatham Central continued to extend its advantage throughout the frame until it swelled to 20 at halftime.

A lane jumper by Cox with 2:05 remaining in the third stanza gave the Bears their biggest lead at 58-31 prior to the Rebel Bulls tallying nine unanswered points over the last 1:47 of the quarter to reduce their deficit to 18 entering the final eight minutes.

After Nic Wilson’s turnaround bucket off the left baseline put Chatham Central up 66-47 with 3:18 to go in the game, the Bears went scoreless the rest of the way while South Stanly closed the contest with an 8-0 spurt to trim the final spread to 11 points.

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