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Streak snappers: Bruins end Bulldogs’ win string at 12

Bruins 57, Bulldogs 41

Nederland   15   3   10   13 — 41

West Brook   20   11   16   10 — 57

Nederland (15-2)

Hayden Hefner 7, Justin Thomas 1, Cade Smith 6, Jonathan Rayford 12, Logan Foster 5, Shafin Momin 6, Tanner Fulk 2.

West Brook (10-2)

Elijah Parquet 13, Phillip Simon 12, Kendrian Corbin 2, Lijon Smith 6, Joey Gobert 2, Eric Jackson 1, Ian Quiroz 2, De’eron Brown 2, Cameron Polk 10, Clayton Carpenter 5.

Three-point goals — Nederland 5 (Smith 2), West Brook 3. Fouled out — None. Free throws — Nederland 7-15, (Rayford 5-8) West Brook 14-21 (Simon 6-6). Total fouls — Nederland 16, West Brook 16. Technicals — None.

BEAUMONT — West Brook has proven early in the basketball season it’s not the West Brook of old … or to be more accurate, of recent memory. The Bruins do have a championship in the Montgomery tournament to show for it.

Coming off championships in its own classic and the Hardin-Jefferson Basketball Marathon, Nederland began Tuesday’s game against the Bruins like the team on a hot streak, before West Brook’s guards dominated on both ends of the floor and raced to a 57-41 win. The result ended Nederland’s winning streak at 12.

“Nederland has a quality team,” second-year West Brook coach Andre Boutte said. “Coach [Brian] English does a great job with them, so we knew we had our work cut out. I’m proud that our guys came in and accepted the challenge, but it’s one challenge out of many.”

Colorado signee Elijah Parquet led the Bruins (10-2) with 13 points, and Peter Simon contributed 12 in the win. More importantly, their pressure defense and ability to attack the basket did the Bulldogs in.

“They’re pretty good,” Nederland coach Brian English said. “Best team we played this year. We needed to see that. I thought we did a pretty good job in some areas, but against that team, we’ve got to make some shots.”

Nederland (15-2) led by as much as 6-1 following three-point baskets by Cade Smith and Shafin Momin, but West Brook’s defense forced the Bulldogs to try and score from the outside, and the visiting team grew cold from the field.

“I think we were 6 for 20 in the first half,” English said. “You’re not just going to win like that against those guys.”

The Bulldogs then tried to attack the basket, but the Bruins countered them with their range in wingspan.

The 6-1 deficit quickly turned into a 20-15 West Brook lead and expanded to 31-18 at halftime. Simon shot 6 for 6 from the free-throw line.

“We were hoping that our pressure would have some type of impact on their shooting, and I think it did midway through the second quarter,” Boutte said.

Neither team put on three-point shooting clinic, as Nederland knocked down five treys to West Brook’s three. Jonathan Rayford, who led Nederland with 12, were one of four Bulldogs to hit from outside.

Hayden Hefner, the sophomore standout and Hardin-Jefferson Marathon MVP, was held to seven points.

“He’s struggling with his shot a little bit right now,” English said. “It’s probably a little [matter of] confidence. We’ve got to get him right. We’re definitely going to have to have him score.”

Nederland will visit another 6A team, Spring Westfield, on Friday before beginning District 22-5A play at home next Tuesday against Beaumont Central.

I.C. Murrell: 549-8541. Twitter: @ICMurrellPANews


About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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