The Port Arthur News
PORT ARTHUR —
It took a full period for the Port Arthur Memorial Titans to get on track Tuesday night but once they did, the Deer were running.
Deer Park was within 20-19 after the first quarter only to see Memorial explode on offense and defense to eventually win 72-51.
Memorial (10-4, 1-0) got a superb effort from Joseph Williams who had his best outing of the season with 16 points and 13 rebounds.
Williams stepped up big in the first and third periods with six points in each frame. The first six came at a crucial time as the Titans could not find a way to get Dorian Chatman open shots.
“I have always been the third leading scorer behind Torian (Lott) and Dorian,” Williams said. “I always know I have to pick up the slack if one of those guys is not hitting shots. That is what happened there early in the game.”
The early parts of Tuesday’s District 21-5A opener were not always pretty for the Titans.
The Deer (5-11, 0-1) were able to find easy lanes to the basket and converted on many easy layups.
Collin Means had six of his team-high 13 points for Deer Park in the game’s first eight minutes.
Deer Park held a 17-13 lead when Memorial decided enough was enough. The Titans ended the first period on a 9-0 run, started by a three-pointer from Lott. Lott finished the night with 14 points, all in the first half.
The Titans then started the second period on an 8-0 run as Roderic Rucker got into the scoring act with six points in the frame. Rucker finished with 12 points.
“Ruck gave us some big minutes tonight,” Memorial Coach Travis Williams said. “I was looking for someone to stop No. 3 (Means) and he said he would be the one to do it. He then came in and also did a great job on offense.”
Memorial outscored Deer Park 21-5 in the second and 23-11 in the third to put the game on ice.
“We continue to stress EET,” Williams added. “At first our Effort and Energy where lacking but those came through. This was a great Team win. A lot of guys played a part in this.”
Chatman scored eight of his 16 points in the third. He finished with six rebounds, two blocks and two steals.
The highlight of his night came off alley-OOP dunks both in the first and third. The first came off an assist from Lott while the second was courtesy of Albert Jacobs in the third to give Memorial a 55-35 lead.
Jacobs did not score in the game yet was very effective with four assists, three steals and three rebounds.
Ron Taylor added 12 points and three steals for the Titans who will look to move to 2-0 in the league standings Friday with a road game at Channelview.
Joseph Williams knows the most important game is always the next for Memorial.
“We had to get back on track tonight after the loss in the championship game to West Brook at the Nederland Tournament,” Joseph Williams said. “We had to get our heads right. We want to stay strong, win district and try to make our way to Austin. We practiced very hard this week. Tonight was a great win.”