PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

December 27, 2013

Titans one win away from Gamble title

Gabriel Pruett
The Port Arthur News

PORT ARTHUR — Torian Lott could finally celebrate after the Port Arthur Memorial Titans faced off against Beaumont Ozen.

Twice this season the Panthers have come out on top of the Titans.

Well, not on Lott’s 18th birthday.

Lott and his teammates advanced to the championship game of the James Gamble Classic with a 72-64 win over the Pantheres. Memorial faces Beaumont Central at 6 p.m. Saturday in the title game.

“This is a great feeling on my birthday,” Lott said. “I am just happy. We really wanted this win. We came into the tournament wanting to face those guys again and we took advantage of it this time.”

Lott finished with 14 points, four rebounds and three steals.

Memorial’s win was in large part because of a first half defense that limited the Panthers to 20 points

Ozen scored only five points in the first quarter.

“The game plan was to take (Jordan) Hunter out of the game,” Lott said. “We wanted to deny him the ball. It worked real well in the first half.”

Hunter scored only three of his team-high 18 points in the first half.

Memorial forced eight turnovers in the game’s first 18 minutes.

The defense led to easy points as the Titans led 35-20 at the break.

Dorian Chatman had 15 points in the first half and finished with 26 points, 10 rebounds and four huge blocks.

Chatman’s thunderous dunk with 1:45 left in the game seemed to be exactly what the Titans needed after Ozen closed the gap to 64-57 with 2:29 remaining on the clock.

Memorial went 6-for-8 from the free throw line down the stretch and avoided a late Ozen rally.

The Panthers, who face West Brook at 4:30 p.m. Saturday for third place, outscored the Titans 26-18 in the fourth.

Memorial got another superb outing from Joseph Williams who finished with nine points and 12 rebounds.

Ozen got 10 points from both Joshua Boyd and Damasters Sams.