Tuscola cruises past JetsMesser’s boys go to 3-0 after thumping Enka by 29 points, Gardner’s girls explode in the second quarter
The Tuscola boys basketball team continued its pattern of strong defense and unselfish offensive play in a 86-57 thrashing of visiting Enka Wednesday night.
More importantly, Tuscola avenged last season’s playoff loss to the Jets.
The Mountaineers, which improved to 3-0 overall, got out to a 26-9 lead after the first eight minutes of action.
“I was happy with how we came out tonight,” Tuscola Head Coach Nathan Messer said. “We played excellent defense from the get go, and ran the floor well.”
Tuscola shot 62.5 percent in the first half, while holding the Jets to a mere 29 percent from the floor en route to a 49-28 halftime lead.
With the starters watching, the Tuscola bench outscored Enka, 37-29 in the second half.
In addition, Tuscola made 19-of-22 (86.3 percent) free throws and a total of 11 Mountaineers logged points, including four who finished in double-figures.
Tuscola senior Aaron Westhusing made five treys to lead all-scorers with 20 points, while seniors Logan Hardin chipped in 19 and Kendrall Harlan contributed 14.
Tuscola senior Thomas Hay also finished with his second double-double of the season. He pulled down 14 boards and scored 12 points.
In three games this season, Hay is averaging 14.7 boards a game, including a season and career-high 21 rebounds in the opener at Erwin.
The Mountaineers will face the Asheville Cougars (0-2) in another non-conference game tonight (8 p.m.).
Gardner’s girls explode in the second quarter
The visiting Enka varsity girls basketball team got Tuscola’s attention after jumping out to a surprising 17-10 lead after the first quarter.
But the Mountaineers exploded for 27 points in the second quarter en route to a 63-47 win over the Jets.
Tuscola improved to 2-1 overall, while the Jets fell to 1-1.
“We got better tonight and we are going to continue to work to build on this improvement,” said Tuscola Head Coach Ann Gardner.
In the final three quarters, the Mountaineers outscored Enka, 53-30 and after the second quarter offensive outburst, led at the break, 37-30.
For Tuscola, Taylor Gibson pumped in a game-high 19 points, Shelby Tricoli had 17 points, Alex Swanger chipped in 10 and Ashley McClure had nine.
Tonight, the Mountaineers will travel to Asheville and will look to extend their win streak to three games when they take on the Cougars at 6:30 p.m.