New Manchester opened the 2014-15 basketball season on Saturday at home against South Cobb High School. The Lady Cougars lost the opening game to the Lady Eagles, 42-35. The New Manchester boys lost in the final seconds, falling to the Eagles, 72-70.
In the boys game, South Cobb took a 17-14 first period lead but the Jaguars jumped out by halftime, taking a 10 point lead into the break. New Manchester led, 50-45, heading into the final period.
The Eagles continued to comeback on the Jaguars, finally tying the game with 12 seconds to go. New Manchester struggled at the line while South Cobb excelled, leading to the comeback. With five seconds remaining in the game, the Eagles connected on a layup. The Jags attempted a half court shot but nothing would come of it.
Despite the loss, Tyler Edwards had a big night, connecting for 32 points. Treveon Griffin followed with 17.
“Tyler was very strong and put the team on his back. He played well defensively and we tried to put the ball in his hands as much as possible,” said NMHS boys coach James Bailey. “Tre came out and gave us a good spark at the start of the game. He rebounded well and played solid defense. He shot well from the outside.”
Bailey said he was pleased with the team’s overall effort, but they still have a lot to do.
“We have to work on some minor issues and after that we will be a very good team,” Bailey added.
In the girls game, South Cobb jumped out to a 12-6 lead and led 24-16 at the half. New Manchester came fighting back after the break with an 11-6 third period. South Cobb’s lead was down to 30-27. However, SCHS outscored the Lady Jaguars 12-8 in the final period for the seven point edge.
“We came out a little slow but picked it up in the second half. We did not shoot the ball well and were hurt with turnovers and at the free throw line. We have some minor mistakes we need to fix,” said NMHS girls coach Vincent Parks. “We played defensively better than we did in the scrimmage game and that carried us when we went to the press. That is something we have to hang our hats on and continue to improve and hopefully we will start to hit more shots.”
Shemyah Wilson, Deesha Brefford, and Desiree Walker each led the Lady Jags with six points.
“Desiree played well and gave us big minutes in the paint,” Parks said. “Deesha controlled the tempo and did a good job handling the basketball."
New Manchester will be back in action on Saturday when they host Whitewater. The girls will play at 6 p.m. and the boys will follow.