PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

January 25, 2014

Williams unimpressed despite Titans wins

Gabriel Pruett
The Port Arthur News

PORT ARTHUR — Lackluster. Uninspired. Pathetic.

Those are just a few of the words Port Arthur Memorial coach Travis Williams was heard saying after Saturday’s 63-47 victory over Channelview.

The only thing Williams was happy about was the fact Memorial won the game and clinched a playoff spot. Memorial is now 18-6 overall and 6-2 heading into Tuesday’s showdown against North Shore. The Titans defeated North Shore, 78-72, on Jan. 3.

“We are not playing Memorial basketball,” Williams said. “We all need to get better, myself included and every player. We can’t blame it on playing on Saturday. We must adjust and adapt. That is an excuse, not a reason.”

Torian Lott finished the game with a game-high 17 points, 15 coming in the fourth period.

Memorial only resembled a fraction of what Memorial looked like in early January in the fourth.

The Titans poured in 23 points in the fourth and forced six of its 22 turnovers.

Poor shooting throughout the game was a common theme for Memorial as the Titans shot 37-percent for the game on 19-for-52 shooting.

Dorian Chatman, who left the game in the fourth with an ankle injury, did not make a basket until the fourth period and finished with 11 points. To his credit, many times Chatman touched the ball the Falcons (1-8) decided to foul the big man instead of giving up a layup. Chatman added 10 rebounds to complete a double-double. He officially only took four shots in the game and made two baskets.

The game seemed like a no-brainer for Memorial after the first period with the Titans up 17-7 even though the home team was 4-for-13 from the field.

Ron Taylor had knocked down two 3-pointers and Tre’Vaughn Dennis added five points in the frame. Dennis finished with 15 points and Taylor added 10. Darren Williams had four of his seven points in the first period. He  also finished with five rebounds.

Channelview closed the Memorial lead down to four points at 19-15 with 4:56 left in the first half.

It forced Williams to take a timeout and at least for a few, the Titans responded.

Memorial ended the second period on an 11-3 run to build a 30-18 halftime lead.

The Falcons outscored the Titans 12-10 in the third as Memorial was 3-for-14 from the field. Dennis had two of the baskets and Lott mixed in his first points of the game. Lott was 0-for-5 in the first half.

The Titans took over early in the fourth and started the period with a 9-0 run, seven of the points coming from Lott. He buried a 3-pointer and was 4-for-4 from the line in the run.

Despite the late flurry, Williams knows his team has a tall-task on its hands when taking on North Shore Tuesday.

“There was no intensity today,” Williams said. “None. I am not sure what it is. The only good to come out of this is we won and secured a playoff spot. We told them six wins would get that job done and it did. I don’t know what it is going to take to get back on track. First thing we need to do is get back to work. Work on everything we can to fix the problem.”

The Titans are are 3-2 since beating North Shore and reaching No. 7 in the state with losses to Baytown Sterling and West Brook.

Channelview’s Trevaughn  Watson finished with a team-high 15 points to go with seven rebounds. Andre Emile added nine points and eight rebounds.

Chatman was seen after the game with ice on his ankle and was walking on his own. He said he would be OK for Tuesday.

Memorial outrebounded Channelview 31-23 for the game.