Wildcats pick up first win in Harden era
Larry Mason

Nov. 15, 2006 - MOUNT VERNON - The Sulphur Springs Wildcats posted their first win of the season under new coach Rusty Harden Tuesday night at Tiger Gymnasium.

Sulphur Springs defeated Mount Vernon 50-34 in a game that was much closer than the score indicated.

"There was a lot that I wasn't happy with in the first half tonight," the coach said. "I didn't see much of anything to tell you the truth. I wasn't happy at all the first half and the kids came out and did a lot better in the second half. We still have a lot of things to work on."

Ledarius Harrison led the way for the Wildcats with 17 points, eight rebounds, five steals and one assist in his varsity debut, while Drew Biggerstaff had 10 points, five steals and two rebounds.

Landry McGonagill and Austin Taylor each scored 10 points for the Tigers, as the team had four blocked shots from McGonagill, Chris Bonner, Zack Jaggers and Deji Ogenseinde.

Neither team could get anything going in the first quarter as both teams combined to shoot 3-for-20 from the field with Mount Vernon leading 6-4.

In the second quarter, Sulphur Springs went on a 10-0 run to take a 14-12 lead with 2:58 remaining on a free throw by Bradley Washington.

Mount Vernon then tied the game as Brantley Price nailed a jumper with under two minutes remaining and the Tigers outscored Sulphur Springs 6-4 the remainder of the half for a 20-18 lead.

In the third quarter, Harden stayed with his starting five and Sulphur Springs was able to take a 35-31 lead into the final quarter behind eight points from Harrison.

Bradley Washington gave Sulphur Springs its first lead of the second half, 29-28, with 2:41 remaining in the third quarter on a putback followed by buckets from Harrison, Aaron Williams and a jumper at the buzzer by Andrew Panter for the 35-31 lead.

Harden said having the football players for the season opener helped out the team and hopefully the players will get adjusted quickly.

"The main difference is we have added more guys to our team. Tonight, it was hard to get some of those guys in since they have only been with us for one day. We are going to try and get them practicing this week," Harden said.

"Now with 12 guys on the team, there is going to be some competition, and in the second half I had to leave my guys that have been in the gym with me because they knew what we were doing."

Sulphur Springs (1-0) is scheduled to host Bonham Friday in the home opener,but the game's status is in limbo. The Bonham girls are in the state volleyball tournament in Austin, so the Warriors may cancel the game. If Harden cannot find a replacement and Bonham cannot come, the game will be canceled.

Notes: Both teams shot the ball under 30 percent for the game as Sulphur Springs was 14-of-56 for 25 percent, while Mount Vernon was 9-of-37 for 24.3 percent. ... The Wildcats had 23 turnovers compared to 27 for the Tigers. ... Colten Nash, Andrew Panter, Tyrick Rollison, DaQualin Evans, Harrison, Demarcus Johnson and Rashad Hall played in their first varsity game.

Junior Varsity

SSHS 54, MVHS 32

Sulphur Springs Johnathan Lee had a game-high 24 points and teammates Jesse Vasquez and Anthony Mills each scored 11 points in the Wildcats' opening win.

Ross led Mount Vernon with 15 points.

SSHS 8 16 19 11 -54

MVHS 12 4 9 7 - 32

SSHS - Jesse Vasquez 11, Anthony Mills 11, Carlos Harrison 6, Johnathan Lee 24, Kaylon Page 2.

MVHS - Poe 2, Ross 15, Hall 2, Drabble 4, Ronse 3, Chen 4, Clark 2.


Mount Vernon 32, SSHS 28

The Sulphur Springs freshman team went into the locker room tied at 9-9 but were outscored 23-19 in the second half for their first loss of the season.

Jacob Carona led the way for the Wildcats with eight points, Lemarcus Kendricks had six points and Bryant Jackson had five.

Dickson led Mount Vernon with a game-high 13 points.

SSHS 5 4 12 7 - 28

MVHS 2 7 7 16 - 32

SSHS - Jacob Carona 8, Gage Williams 1, Lemarcus Kendricks 6, Colby Suggs 4, Joey Davis 3, Jordan Lee 1, Bryant Jackson 5.

MVHS - Ramirez 2, Carnell 8, Doss 6, Dickson 13, Rutledge 2, Birdwell 1.

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