Wildcats advance to NEA Invitational semi-finals
Trumann led from start to finish as the Wildcats posted a 63-52 win over EPC this past Saturday to advance to the semi-finals of the boys’ Division II bracket of the NEA Invitational Tournament being played at First National Bank Arena in Jonesboro.
Mario Burks gave Trumann an early 3-0 lead with a three-pointer before TJ Bush scored inside for EPC to make it 3-2. Ben Turner hit one of two free throws for the Wildcats as Zach Buchanan got a stick back basket for Trumann to make it 6-2 Wildcats. Jonathan Gilmore scored inside for the Warriors, Aaron Phelan hit a three-pointer and Turner hit one of two free throws for the Wildcats before EPC got a conventional three-point play from Gilmore and a jumper in the lane from Bush to cut the Trumann lead to 10-9 with 3:38 left. Phelan hit three free throws after being fouled attempting a three-pointer for the Wildcats as Burks scored inside and Dedrick Coleman hit two free throws for Trumann to make the score 17-9 Trumann. Jamario Burris got a tip-in for EPC, Turner hit a three-ball for the Wildcats, Preston Rains stuck back an offensive rebound for the Warriors before Burks hit a jumper in the lane and two free throws for Trumann to give the Wildcats a 24-13 lead after one.
Burks again opened the quarter with a three-pointer for the Wildcats as Bush scored inside for EPC to make it 27-15 early in the second quarter. Trumann got one of two free throws from Turner and a basket inside from Coleman before Bush converted an old-fashioned three-point play for the Warriors to make the score 30-18 Trumann with 4:50 left. Buchanan hit one of two free throws for Trumann, Gilmore scored inside for EPC, Will White hit a jumper for the Wildcats as Rayshon Gates hit one of two free throws for the Warriors to make it 33-21 Trumann. MJ Barnes canned a three-pointer for the Wildcats as Gates, Gilmore and Burris scored consecutive baskets for EPC to make the score 36-27 Trumann. Burks hit two free throws for the Wildcats before Gilmore drilled a three-ball for the Warriors to make it 38-30 Wildcats at the half.
Complete game article in December 27 PCDT!